A Smile Does A Lot More Thank You Think
It is human nature that we smile or laugh when we are happy. Interestingly, if we smile or laugh a lot we will become happy as well! There appears to be two-way-communication between our brains and our actions. So smiling is not just a simple facial movement from some muscles.
Science has shown that the mere act of smiling can trick your brain into happiness. We all know that happiness can improve your physical health and mental wellness. People who are happy have stronger immune systems and live longer. The have better moods, can lower stress and finish a task with better outcomes.
How can smiles reverse the stress?
A smile can induce the brain to secrete certain hormones like dopamine and serotonin. Those hormones will increase happiness and positive outlook. People who have low levels of those hormones have depression and anxiety.
Smiling to people also receives better approval and acceptance from strangers and acquaintances alike. The is a positive reinforcement of the mood and perception of the brain. This positive circle will further improve the happiness/wellness of an already smiling person.
What if someone is not happy in their mind but pretends to be happy with a smile? It is interesting to see that science has proved that the act of smiling can make a difference in building your immunity. The brain get tricked into thinking that something humorous is happening by the activity of the smile muscles in the face.
There are two more things that happen when you smile, smiling lowers the heart rate and blood pressure as well.
How about laughter? It actually reduces pain, increases job performance, connects people emotionally, and improves the flow of oxygen to the heart and brain.
In light of all these great benefits, we need to smile and laugh as often as possible. Cosmetic dentistry will definitely improve the smile and the positive effects on the brain. It is a broad term that includes a few dental disciplines. If the teeth are not straight then we can do braces or Invisalign to make them nice and straight. In certain circumstances, porcelain veneers and/or white bonding are the better options to make the teeth appear straight. Black triangles (dark spaces between front teeth where the gums are supposed to be) can be managed by cosmetic restorations or gum surgery to fill up the space. For a gummy smile (too much gums or uneven gum line), gum trimming and or orthodontic teeth intrusion can be utilized to address the issues. If the teeth are too long due to receded gum, gum grafting and/or orthodontic teeth extrusion can be considered. Yellow or dark teeth are the most common complaint. Teeth cleaning, followed by whitening or bleaching is usually the best path. Porcelain veneers and whitening bonding can also modify the shade of the tooth to the desirable bleached white shade. Missing teeth can be replaced with implant-supported teeth/crowns, or bridges. Ill fitting, loose or worn-down denture teeth can be replaced with newer dentures made with digital processes that provide much better fitting. Implants can be utilized to make the loose denture much more stable and feel more like your own teeth during chewing. With the proper examination, diagnosis and treatment plan, combined with a well executed treatment process, the outcomes can be life changing, putting a smile on your face for good with a healthy mind and happiness.
Despite this pandemic and its accompanying difficulty, we still should make a conscious effort to smile all the time. It is not just good for ourselves, it also gives a positive vibe to the people surrounding you and this vibe will spread like the virus itself. This will help all of us fight this pandemic together with stronger, healthier minds and immune systems. In my last blog, I mentioned that we could start practicing smiling on a mirror to make sure our smile is as natural and pleasant as possible.
At this time, Dr. Wong at Affinity Dental Care is only seeing dental emergencies. When this pandemic is under control, please give us a call for a consultation to see how Dr. Wong can improve your smile.
Remember, laughter is the best medicine.