Feeling a bit stressed out? Get your smile on! Numerous studies have shown that smiling releases endorphins, natural painkillers, and serotonin. These three neurotransmitters make us feel happier and less stressed. The effect on our mood and health is similar to exercise and good sleep — it simply makes you feel better. In one study, smiling made people feel happier, even if they were feeling sad or stressed. Another study shows that smiling can help reduce pain and discomfort.
Here are some other things about smiling that you may not know:
Other people will smile back. Studies have shown that people tend to emulate the facial expressions of those around them. A boss who smiles, for example, may have employees who smile more. It’s a great chain reaction. Give it a try the next time you’re at work, at home with your family or around other people.
It can make you more approachable. Scientists have discovered that people who smile are more approachable to their family and co-workers. One study found that people who smile a lot are viewed as more likable. Another great reason to turn that frown upside down!
It can lower your blood pressure. Research shows that smiling and laughter prompt an immediate increase in your heart rate and oxygen consumption, followed by a period of muscle relaxation, decreased heart rate and lower blood pressure. Researchers are exploring other ways smiling and laughter can boost your body’s vital functions. So go watch that funny movie or your favorite standup comedian.
It can give your immune system a boost. A group of studies shows that smiling and laughing can boost your immune system. Studies have shown that smiling provides an array of mental and physical health benefits that can be long-lasting.
Men smile less. Most studies on the subject have found that men smile less than women, although there is little agreement as to why. Research shows that children smile the most — an average of 400 times per day. Babies smile an average of 200 times a day, the average woman smiles 62 times a day and the average man smiles only 8 times per day. How much do you smile each day?
Here’s something to really smile about: At Utah Eye Centers, we have a commitment to excellence and work hard to create a welcoming and friendly environment for our patients. We’re here for all of your vision needs. Just give us a call at (801) 476-0494to schedule an eye exam with one of our amazing doctors.