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10/06/2017
World Smile Day - How Smiling Affects Your Brain
Corporate Communications

Few things can brighten someone’s dreary day like a well-placed smile. Whether it’s the barista who handed you your morning coffee or a friend or coworker flashing their pearly whites, smiling is an easy way to improve not only the world around you, but the feelings within you as well. And because today is World Smile Day (the first Friday in October each year), we’d like to dive into what exactly happens in the mind when you smile.

Let’s start with the brain chemistry. Smiling activates tiny molecules in your brain that are designed to fend off stress. These molecules, called neuropeptides, facilitate communication between neurons in your brain. Also, when you smile, your brain releases dopamine, endorphins and serotonin. These neurotransmitters are associated with lowering your anxiety and increasing feelings of happiness. In fact, serotonin is often the chemical that anti-depressant medications attempt to regulate. This natural, feel-good chemical cocktail that your brain serves up helps you feel happier and more relaxed, and it can even lower your heart rate and blood pressure.

If that wasn’t enough, how would you like to be more attractive? You don’t have to plan any exercise routine or put on fancy clothing – all you have to do is put on a smile. A study at a Scotland University found that those who smiled and made eye contact were consistently rated higher on the attractiveness scale than those who didn’t.

We’ve all heard that smiling is contagious, but is that just an old cliché or is it true? The part of your brain that aides in smiling when happy or mimicking someone’s smile resides in an unconscious automatic response area. In other words, smiling truly is contagious. When someone smiles at you, you are behaviorally and psychologically conditioned to return the favor. Or when you’re feeling happy, you have to make a conscious effort to suppress the smile that unconsciously wants to spread across your face. And when smiling boosts your mood, makes you more attractive and can easily spread to others, why would you want to?

Regardless of how you’re feeling today, try putting on a smile and seeing how it affects your internal and external experience. You might be pleasantly surprised. It might even put another smile on your face.

Source: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/cutting-edge-leadership/201206/there-s-magic-in-your-smile

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  • debbie bennett - 10/28/2020 - 9:13pm (29 days ago)

    interesting to learn about how smiling affects the brain:)

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Location Finder

Here's your guide to finding any of the facilities in the Aultman family of health services, including maps and contacts. 

Need a Doctor?

Aultman Medical Group's network of more than 240 providers is committed to high-level patient care.

Schedule an Appointment

Call 330-363-6288 or click below to complete an online form. 

 

Donate Today

You can help support and enhance services, and in turn, help patients and their families who benefit from care received at Aultman.

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