Let’s face it, 2020 didn’t give us much to smile about.
But thankfully, hope is on the horizon in the shape of the COVID-19 vaccine – and, here at Kiln Lane Dental, we believe there’s plenty of reasons to start showing off those pearly whites. After all, smiling is good for you and can trigger a wide range of surprising benefits.
So, forget about fad diets and unrealistic exercise goals. Why not keep your New Year’s resolution simple this year and smile more? There’s never been a better time to get started.
3 benefits of smiling that you need to know
Research has shown that, when you crack a smile, the body releases three hormones: dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins. These are the same ‘feel-good’ hormones that are produced when we exercise. Not only can they significantly lift your mood, they can also reduce feelings of stress.
And the best bit? You can fake it ‘til you make it. The release of these hormones is triggered by the movement of our facial muscles – and our brain can’t tell the difference between a real smile and a fake one. So even if you don’t feel like it, force a grin and you can still reap the benefits.
Smiling more can boost your health and immune system.
For example, increased levels of serotonin will stimulate white blood cells, which fight against infection in the body. Smiling also activates a chemical reaction in the brain, releasing small hormones known as ‘neuropeptides’, that are responsible for maintaining your immune tolerance.
What’s more, smiling can help to reduce cortisol levels. This is known as the ‘stress’ hormone and lower levels are associated with a better heart rate, lower blood pressure and less physical tension.
A smile is an easy, inexpensive way to significantly improve your looks.
In fact, studies have found that happy facial expressions can make us look up to three years younger. This is because smiling naturally lifts the face, helping to reduce frown lines and wrinkles. It can also make you appear friendlier, approachable, and more confident and attractive to others.
How can you increase your daily smiles?
We’re living through very difficult times and, understandably, you may not feel like grinning from ear to ear. But looking after our health – both emotional and physical – is more important than ever before and smiling could be exactly what you need to give yourself a little boost.
So, to start flexing those facial muscles, you could:
– write down things that make you happy on post-it notes and stick them around the house
– set reminders on your phone or aim to smile every time you get stuck in traffic or a queue
– watch a comedy film or funny videos online
– look at your favourite photos and create an album of good memories
– make time to connect with friends and family (even if it has to be via Zoom!)
The possibilities are endless. Smiling is a powerful tool and one that shouldn’t be overlooked. So do things that make you happy. Or fake it. Either way, you’re bound to see a positive effect.
Not a fan of your smile?
Don’t let it hold you back.
Here at Kiln Lane Dental, smiles are our forte. We have a range of treatment options available, including tooth whitening, veneers, composite bonding, Invisalign and more – all designed to transform your teeth and boost your confidence. Whatever you have in mind, our team of specialists can create a bespoke plan to achieve your desired look. So, why not get in touch today?
Make 2021 the year that your dream smile becomes a reality and start to smile more.