Imagine walking out your door first thing in the morning and being greeted by everyone as you smile back at them. Your smile brings joy to others. It elicits joy within. A transformation occurs at work and in relationships when a smile is front and center. Smiling is contagious and it’s more than an expressive reaction for when you’re happy—it has actual physical, mental, and interpersonal benefits. Smiling has even been thought to be linked to longevity. Your smile releases endorphins that have wide-reaching effects on your mind, body, and mood, as well as on the people in your environment.
If missing teeth has prevented you from smiling or laughing, we offer dental implant solutions to let you show off your beautiful smile once again. Discover the significant benefits of showing your healthy smile to the world.
The act of smiling activates neural messaging that benefits your health and happiness. Smiling facilitates the release of neuropeptides that work towards alleviating stress. Neuropeptides are tiny molecules that allow neurons to communicate and send messages to the entire body when a person feels emotions. Dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin are the positive feeling neurotransmitters that help to relax the body, lowering your heart rate and blood pressure.
These neurotransmitters are valuable because they not only make you happy but also play a significant role in decreasing stress. It’s worth noting that your smile doesn’t have to be completely genuine to reap the benefits. Even making yourself smile or laugh will also produce these mood-enhancing neurotransmitters.
A study conducted by the University of Kansas had participants use chopsticks to force themselves to smile while they performed a demanding task. When tested, they were demonstrated to have lower overall heart rates than participants who performed the same task without using the chopsticks.
Another major advantage of smiling is that it decreases the production of cortisol, the hormone associated with stress. Cortisol produces many of the negative emotions caused by stress, and we can significantly improve our mood by decreasing it. Too much cortisol can result in a variety of issues ranging from acne to weight gain to high blood pressure. Reducing cortisol levels provides benefits that contribute to your overall wellness and happiness. All you have to do is smile!
Feeling stressed? A good laugh can release pent-up emotions and significantly reduce stress, all with the added benefit of helping your lungs. A seriously good belly laugh can expand the lungs, stretch the muscles in the body, tone the abdominal muscles, and stimulate homeostasis. This replenishes the cells by exercising the body in a way that the lungs get completely filled with oxygen, similar to how cardiovascular exercises work.
During laughter, your diaphragm, abdominal muscles, and chest tighten, making your lungs work harder to expel and take in more air. Oxygen is essential for cell function, a healthy immune system, and all of our internal systems. Additionally, people who laugh more tend to be happier and better able to cope with stress in their daily lives. Consider having a good laugh when work stress is getting to you—your body will thank you for it.
Smiling doesn’t just enhance your current mood — it can also improve your attitude. As you smile more often, having positive feelings becomes a habit. Over time, this can actually have the effect of “breaking the brain’s natural tendency to think negatively.” Smiling spreads feelings of goodwill and improves the mood of those around you.
If you smile more often, people will naturally assume that you’re more confident and outgoing. This increases feelings of empathy and makes people want to be around you because your smile makes you seem more approachable and gives the impression that you’re a friendly person. This can be beneficial when trying to form and maintain good relationships.
There’s a lot of research that demonstrates how people who smile are seen as friendlier and more attractive to others. One study even found that service employees who smile more often really do inspire more customers to approach and talk to them. According to another study, smiling can be contagious like yawning, which means that when you do smile, sometimes the world really does smile back.
Your appearance improves twofold when you smile. People respond differently and there’s a sense of feeling rewarded. As a whole for the body, smiling makes you viewed as attractive and activates the region in your brain that processes sensory rewards. Both men and women are more attracted to images of people who make eye contact and smile than those who don’t.
Smiling doesn’t just make you healthier, happier, and more attractive. It can also enhance your career. By increasing feelings of trust in those around you, smiling will improve all your relationships, including your professional ones. That’s why people who smile more often can expect to earn more money over the course of their careers.
From job interviews to building healthy relationships to advancing in your career, a smiling face also indicates confidence and an ability to cope with challenging situations. This can be seen as favorable in the eyes of employers and potential life partners.
When you smile, your body experiences a physical reaction regardless of whether the smile is genuine or not. Your brain will read the muscle movement and trigger a release of endorphins and cortisol to help us deal with any stress, followed by an influx of dopamine and serotonin.
Some of the benefits of this combination of neuropeptides and neurotransmitters include reduced pain and stress, reduced blood pressure, and even an enhanced immune system.
Because the brain will interpret the action of smiling independently of the intention behind it, smiling can have an immediate boost on your mood and overall mental health. Smiling has been shown to help reduce anxiety, combat feelings of depression, and lower levels of stress. Smiling regularly can rewire and train your brain to produce those neurochemicals more regularly, which can lead to an improved quality of life and even increase your productivity.
With that being said, if your levels of anxiety or depression grow to unmanageable levels, you should seek assistance from a medical professional.
Once you begin to consciously look at all the things that are uplifting and funny, you’ll be more aware of them, in tune with them, and more apt to engage in a spontaneous laugh or smile. Don’t deprive yourself of the benefits and joys of smiling. If you’re ready to transform your smile or you’d like more information about our dental implants—schedule an appointment at our Tarpon Springs office by calling (727) 361-0326 and see what we can do for you.
2605 Keystone Rd
Tarpon Springs, FL
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Tuesday: 7:30AM – 5PM
Wednesday: 7:30AM – 5PM
Thursday: 7:30AM – 5PM
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