Roseacre Dental Practice Kent
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lady with a big smile

9th July 2018

Smile, it’s good for your health!

The phrase ‘laugher is infectious’ rings true with smiling, too. Our body language and facial expressions subconsciously add to the words we say and the actions we perform, so a smile can add a new pep in your step. It can even influence the others around you, so it’s incredibly important we take care of ours. Here’s 5 facts that prove that smiling is good for your health…

We first practice smiling in the womb

A happy baby is a happy baby way before they start babbling and playing in their nursery. Durham University conducted research that showed that unborn babies practice smiling in the womb, ensuring they can communicate with the world around them as soon as they’re born. Babies in the womb also try grimacing, frowning, and wrinkling their nose long before they’re born too. While they aren’t actually aware of what they’re doing or what it signifies, we think it’s indicative of how smiling is ingrained in all of us.

Smiling is contagious

Evidence shows that we mirror people’s facial expressions around us almost without meaning to. This academic journal suggests that we ‘try on’ the emotions of the people who are opening communication or recognition with us. This is why when you pass a well-meaning stranger in the street or catch someone’s eye in the supermarket, you both can’t help but share a small smile. It helps us not only communicate, but it also triggers our need to understand and empathise with those around us. We try on these emotions to show that we understand this other person, constantly decoding what we see and sharing it back.

A smile makes great pain relief

The phrase ‘smiling through the pain’ has some medical reasoning, it seems. Laughter and smiling work as the body’s own natural painkillers because they heighten your pain threshold and create a higher tolerance. This could possibly be because we’re tricking the brain into thinking something positive is happening, so it responds by releasing the happiness hormones. In the case of laughing it could be due to the tensing and contracting of muscles, driving attention away from the pain. This works for both emotional and physical pain – tricking your brain into happiness by ‘grinning and bearing it’ lessens negative emotions and their sway over you too.

Laughter can boost your immune system

Laughter is, apparently, the best form of medicine. Laughing and smiling boosts your immune system and its function. Laughter, smiling, and positive thoughts release molecules in your brain that combat stress and illness, while negative thoughts decrease your body’s immunity. Laughter therapy is now offered for those with hormone and mood imbalances, like new mums dealing with fluctuation, and this boosts the immune system too.

A smile can reduce stress and help your heart

This scientific study has shown that smiling can reduce stress and help your heart. The study details two different types of smiles and monitors the heart rates and moods of those performing each type. The results showed that those who were instructed to smile recovered from stressful activities with lower heart rates and lower stress levels than those that didn’t. By smiling through the experiments’ trials, they were able to keep their stress levels down and their heart happy and healthy too!
 
This is why we champion routine dental care and dental health maintenance appointments – because they’ll keep you smiling, and therefore happier and healthier.

Smiling can even be a little stressful if you’re not comfortable with your grin. Wonky or crowded teeth, missing teeth, or a yellowing smile all are common reasons why some of us don’t want to beam and laugh. Roseacre Dental in Kent want to keep you smiling, so take a look at our dental implants and maybe even brighten your smile with teeth whitening.

Book your appointment today.