We’ve all heard the old expression, “It takes fewer muscles to smile than it does to frown”. While this is not actually true, it takes fewer muscles to frown, there is an increasing amount of evidence that shows that what you feel may not be merely reflected by facial expressions – but also driven by them. In other words, there are benefits of smiling more frequently, despite being in a “bad mood”.
Back in 2009, “psychologists at the University of Cardiff in Wales found that people whose ability to frown is compromised by cosmetic Botox injections are happier, on average, than people who can frown.” (ScientificAmerican.com)
We can infer from this that, while facial expressions reflect your mood, they can also drive your mood; with other studies clearly indicating that even using a “false smile” can elevate your mood.
Positive effects of smiling more often
There is also plenty of evidence available that positive thinking affects the chemical reaction of your brain, which can lead us to assume that smiling more often will do the same, as a reflection of a positive mindset. In other words, being happy is a reflection of your thoughts and actions, rather than the feelings you experience based on what happens to you.
So, in short, here are the reasons you should smile more often:
- Smiling reduces stress and anxiety – Smiling releases endorphins, the “feel good” chemicals from your brain that lower the perception of pain and also increase feelings of euphoria. Studies show that people who smiled while recovering from stressful situations had lower heart rates than people who did not smile. The next time you’re feeling stressed or anxious, try smiling, it may be just the thing to calm you down.
- Smiling makes you appear more attractive – Simply turning up the corners of your mouth makes you appear more physically attractive, personable, easy-going, empathetic, and competent when compared to someone with a neutral expression. You will also be viewed as more approachable, because it indicates that you are willing to interact with other people.
- Smiling increases self-esteem – Smiling, in conjunction with good posture, can help you instantly feel more confident. Try this trick right before a date or a job interview.
Of course, if you have stained, ugly or missing teeth smiling more often will become a real challenge. This means that taking care of your teeth is critical to your long-term happiness. If your smile is not as attractive as you wish it to be, visit your dental professional for advice on improving your smile.
The doctors and staff at The Colorado Center for Implants and Prosthetic Dentistry, are your full-service Littleton dental implants specialist and are experts in all types of tooth replacement therapy. If you would like more information on your family’s dental needs, make an appointment today.