The term, “makeover,” can make comprehensive smile improvement seem like a purely cosmetic issue; a luxury, perhaps, but not a particular necessity. For the most part, smile makeovers consist mostly of cosmetic dental treatments, but the benefits of improving your confidence go far beyond your immediate appearance. The benefits of consistent, confident smiling have been studied and documented by numerous researchers, and being proud of your smile can have long-lasting effects on your personal and professional life. The goal of a smile makeover is to conservatively address the issues that stop you from smiling fully, so you can once again enjoy the benefits your smile has to offer.
A Confident Smile is Powerful
In 2011, Ron Gutman, public speaker, writer, and founder of HealthTap (an invaluable resource that connects people with questions to doctors with answers), spoke during a TED Talks presentation on the hidden power of smiling. During his talk, Mr. Gutman asks if you’ve ever wondered why adults tend to smile when around smiling children. Researchers at Uppsala University in Sweden partly answered that question with a study involving photos of facial expressions.
Participants were shown numerous pictures of expressionless, happy, and angry faces, and then asked to form facial expressions of their own. The participants found it difficult, if not impossible, to form frowning or neutral faces when looking at pictures of people smiling, suggesting there’s truth to the old adage that smiling is contagious.
A Confident Smile Can Make You Healthier
It may seem pretty obvious that you feel better when someone makes you smile, but some studies suggest smiling, itself, can make you feel better. When your facial muscles lift in a smile, they also lift tiny facial bones they’re connected to, improving blood and oxygen flow to the frontal lobe of your brain. The muscle-contraction also encourages your brain to produce endorphins, like dopamine, that can lift your mood and make you feel less irritable. As a result, smiling can significantly lower your stress levels and reduce your risk of stress-related illnesses, like cardiovascular disease.