Did you notice a change in your overall body the last time you spent the day smiling and laughing? Did your stress level seem lower and your attitude better? There are some amazing (and really surprising) health benefits to smiling.
Today’s blog from Parkcrest Dental Group discusses six surprising health benefits of smiling and how good dental hygiene plays a role.
Related Post: Preparing Your Smile For Big Events
1. Reduces Pain
Studies from UC Irvine show that people who smiled while getting a shot actually reported less pain than those who didn’t. This has everything to do with the facial muscles triggering a part of the brain that release endorphins. These endorphins override the part of the brain that acknowledges pain. This is great news for those who find needles scary. It’s also good news for anyone experiencing pain. Even though you may not want to, smile the next time you’re in pain and see what kind of effect it has on you. You just might be surprised.
2. Improves Immune System and Reduces Stress
A smile is often the beginning of a laugh. Many studies have shown that people who laugh frequently are actually healthier. This is because the body naturally creates immune cells and infection-fighting antibodies when laughter breaks out. Laughter and smiling reduce stress because of the influx of endorphins. Studies have shown that people under a great deal of stress are more likely to suffer from illnesses. So smiling improves the overall health of the human body, which is why Parkcrest Dental encourages you to smile and laugh more!
3. Lowers Blood Pressure
Just like reducing stress and boosting immunity, smiling lowers blood pressure. An article from The College of Family Physicians states that smiles that result in laughter increases blood flow and oxygen consumption. This is followed by lower heart rate and muscle relaxation. Smiling and laughing has been proven to lower blood pressure, thereby increasing heart health. There’s something to be said for a “happy heart.”
4. Increases Productivity
A smiling person often holds their shoulders back and head high, exuding overall confidence and happiness. This leads to higher productivity at work. People who smile often have been shown to have higher levels of productivity which result in promotions, stronger work relationships, and even higher pay.
5. Makes You Feel Happier
Did you know that children smile about 400 times every day, compared to the average adult who only smiles 20 times a day? (A happy adult smiles 40 times.) Happy children do not suffer from chronic anxiety or high blood pressure. When we smile, endorphins are released through the body, creating an overall sense of euphoria. This lifts the mood, releases tension, and actually changes thought patterns. It’s an old cliche, but it’s true: A smile is contagious. If you’re smiling and happy, those around you are more likely to be as well.
6. Makes You More Approachable
No one wants to have a conversation or spend time with someone who is frowning. A frown is a negative cue to the brain, telling us to be wary. A smiling person, however, tells our brain there is no danger and we are safe to proceed. People who smile often have more friends because they are easily approachable and likeable. If you find that people hesitate to approach your desk or office, try smiling more and see how your interactions change for the better.
Dental Health and Smiling
If you have tooth issues like decayed or discolored teeth or teeth in need of braces or orthodontics, you may be less likely to smile. Aside from the fact that dental issues can cause health problems, it’s also keeping you from smiling. This can impact your relationships, career, and your mental health. If you’re suffering from dental issues, contact Parkcrest Dental Group or call (417) 887-1220 today. Let’s discuss a treatment plan and get you on the road to more smiles.