Thursday, 13 January 2022

Ten reasons to smile more

For most of the time, smiling and laughing are involuntary responses to something that we find funny or that makes us feel happy, however, they can also be a conscious action. Whether you smile voluntarily or involuntarily, they can both have the same effect on our mental and physical wellbeing. 

It’s often said that laughter is the best medicine and there’s a good reason for this. Many studies have shown that both smiling and laughing can have a positive impact. A study published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, states that: “in addition to a stress-relief effect, laughter can bring about feelings of being uplifted or fulfilled to showing that the act of laughter can lead to immediate increases in heart rate, respiratory rate, respiratory depth, and oxygen consumption. These increases are then followed by a period of muscle relaxation, with a corresponding decrease in heart rate, respiratory rate, and blood pressure.”

So, if you’re feeling under the weather and are in need of a natural reliever, here are some more reasons to smile:

Smiling can lift your mood

When we smile, it triggers neuropeptides in your brain, which can have a positive effect on your emotions. Like dopamine and serotonin, smiling can elevate your mood. But you can also trick your mind into feeling happy just by making yourself smile or laugh.

Smiling can boost the immune system

When you smile, your body automatically feels more relaxed and its this relaxation that strengthens your immune system and makes it work more effectively. So, when you smile more, you could be fending off colds and flu without even realising it.

Smiling can lower blood pressure

As cited in the study above by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, when we laugh it initially increases our heart rate and breathing which then lowers our blood pressure.

Smiling is a natural painkiller

Smiling releases serotonin and endorphins in the brain. These are natural chemicals that are produced to make us feel good and improve our mood. But as well as elevating our feelings of wellbeing, they can also reduce physical pain.

Smiling can help you live longer

Because smiling has such a positive effect on our mental and physical wellbeing, it can also contribute to living a longer life. When we’re feeling happy, we may see improved health and it’s believed that this could increase our overall lifespan by several years.

Smiling is contagious

Not only can smiling have a positive effect on our own health, but it’s also contagious and can elevate the mood of others. When we see other people happy, our brain recognises this and often makes us imitate their smile or laugh subconsciously.

Smiling makes you look and feel more vibrant

There’s a reason why we are drawn to happy people – smiling gives the impression that you are a more positive person and fun to be around so naturally, others will want to spend more time around you. This, too, can have a knock-on effect on how you feel about yourself, making you feel more self-confident.

Smiling helps you feel positive

Even when a smile or laughter is forced, just the action of moving the smile muscles in your face can increase feelings of positivity as this will provide the necessary feedback to tell your brain that you are happy. In turn, your brain then tells your body to act accordingly, making you feel more positive emotions.

Smiling can relieve stress

When we’re stressed, not only does it show in our expressions and bodily movements, but it can also have long-term effects on our health. By smiling, even if you don’t feel like doing it, it can benefit you mentally and physically. Studies have reported that smiling can have a positive impact on our heart rate which can help to relieve feelings of stress.

Smiling can reduce the risk of heart disease

Smiling or laughing can help lower your blood pressure and this is a positive factor in reducing the risk of developing heart disease.

No comments:

Post a Comment