You’ve probably heard the old saying “smile and the world smiles with you,” but did you ever stop to wonder why that is? It’s easy to underestimate the power of an attractive smile, but it can actually play an important role in the way others perceive us, even in these days of mask mandates and Zoom meetings. First impressions still matter whether they happen virtually or at the appropriate social distance!
A healthy smile goes beyond making a positive initial impression, however. Correcting crooked teeth can have a positive effect on not only the appearance of your smile, but your body, mind, and emotions as well! Let’s take a closer look at some of the benefits that come with improving your oral health, and how Vermette Orthodontics can help you do just that.
Boost your total body health
Misaligned teeth and jaws can obviously impact your appearance, but they can also lead to health problems if left untreated over time. Oral issues may interrupt your ability to chew, swallow, and absorb nutrients properly, and can increase your risk for tooth decay, TMJ pain, and chronic headaches. Your speech may even suffer! Orthodontic treatment to correct misalignments can relieve or eliminate these symptoms, contributing to better oral health, total body health, and a better quality of life in general.
But that’s not all a healthy smile can do for you! Smiling regularly has been shown to boost your immune system as well. As the infection fighters in our bodies, antibodies are very important to our overall wellness. Smiling increases their presence and also reduces stress. The less stressed you are, the less rigid your cells are, allowing your immune response cells to attack pathogens and other health threats much faster.
Say hello to a happier brain
Over the years, our brains have developed a natural tendency to be negative. While this is an important survival mechanism for humans, it can be frustrating dealing with it on a daily basis! Fortunately, our brains also have the capability to change and rewire themselves based on experiences we have on a regular basis. For example, when you smile, your brain becomes aware of this behavior and keeps track of it. The more frequently you do it, the better your brain gets at breaking those old patterns of negative thought.
As your brain adjusts to this over time, it becomes easier and easier to think with more positivity than negativity! In return, this can increase your self-confidence, enhance your creativity, and give you the gumption to do the tasks you may not otherwise be inclined to carry out.
Not in the mood for smiling? Fake it ‘til you make it! The physical act of smiling alone causes your brain to release “happy” chemicals like dopamine and serotonin into your bloodstream. These chemicals meet up with neuropeptides and endorphins and mingle with the receptors in your brain to promote a relaxed, positive feeling throughout your body. The next time you’re feeling stressed, try smiling for a few minutes and see if it helps turn your frown upside down!
Give others something to smile about
There’s been a lot of research over the years on just how powerful a simple smile can be. In one study, Yale University divided volunteers into small groups and assigned each of them a specific task. One volunteer was secretly instructed to act happy as they entered the room. When they came in smiling, the mood in the room lifted immediately! Each person involved performed their task better after that, as well.
The University of Kansas studied smiles in a similar way. They started by giving volunteers a list of stressful tasks to complete. Some participants were asked to smile during these tasks while others were told to maintain a straight face. When researchers measured the heart rates of all the participants, they found that those who had been told to smile had lower heart rates and increased resistance to stress. These particular volunteers also reported feeling more positive than usual, highlighting how one smile can benefit everyone around you!
Connect with others more authentically
Many people with crooked teeth feel uncomfortable smiling widely or laughing freely and are more prone to covering their mouths when doing so. If this sounds like you, you’re not alone! Unfortunately, this can make it difficult to connect with others in a meaningful way. Covered or infrequent smiles when interacting with someone may be misinterpreted as unfriendliness or being stand-offish. On the other hand, people with straight teeth tend to smile more often, which can make them seem more open and friendly than someone who doesn’t. When you feel good about how your smile looks and feels, you’ll be much more likely to share it with those around you!
Find your best smile with Vermette Orthodontics
If you’re self-conscious about your teeth or your oral health, you could be missing out on the many benefits of a healthy, confident smile! Orthodontic treatment with Dr. Vermette and our talented team can help you feel more confident, boost your total body health, and give you a beautiful smile you’ll want to share with everyone around you. There’s a lot to love about that!
Our practice is committed to giving every patient a stress-free orthodontic experience with superior results. From your first appointment to your last, you can trust us to provide the highest-quality care and exceptional customer service. If you’re ready to learn more about transforming your smile with orthodontics, get in touch today to schedule your FREE consultation with Dr. Vermette. Your best smile is waiting for you!