You might recognize the maxim, “Smile and the world smiles with you.” Did you know, however, that studies have shown the human smile actually is contagious? It’s also the most widely recognized expression in the world, transcending language to portray a person’s joy and good will. As the subject of numerous studies, however, the power and benefits of smiling go far beyond sharing your joyful expression with others. It can also significantly improve your self-image, reduce chronic stress, serve a number of important social functions, and, perhaps, help you live longer and healthier.
Exploring the Hidden Power of Smiling
Ron Gutman, public speaker, writer, and founder of HealthTap, began studying the benefits of smiling after experiencing the transformative power it had in his own life. His research included a wealth of studies, such as one from Uppsala University in Sweden that found participants had difficulty frowning while looking at other people smiling. Another “Aha, moment,” as Mr. Gutman describes, came in the form of a 2010 Wayne State University research project that involved pre-1950s baseball cards. The Major League players who didn’t smile in their pictures lived an average of 72.9 years, while those who beamed joyfully on their cards lived, on average, over 80 years.
(For more information on Ron Gutman’s smile research, view the TEDtalks video, “The Hidden Power of Smiling”
Extended Benefits of a Confident Smile
As one of the most basic human expressions, smiling comes naturally to all of us, and is a vital resource in our routine communication with others. A smile can make you seem more approachable and invite others to interact more openly, as well as make you appear more confident, capable, and trustworthy. Though people may rarely give their smiles a second thought (unless they’re unhappy with how their smiles look), the simple yet elegant expression plays a vital role in many aspects of your life.
About Your San Diego Periodontist:
To learn how to keep your smile healthy and beautiful so you can enjoy the many benefits it offers, subscribe to this blog, and visit Dr. Kania for a consultation. As a board-certified periodontist, Dr. Ann Kania is specially qualified to diagnose and treat issues concerning periodontal tissue and the supportive structures of a patient’s smile, as well as place dental implants to replace teeth lost to dental disease or trauma. To seek Dr. Kania’s expertise, visit our office or contact us today at (760) 642-0711.