Maybe you’ve learned to put up a tough exterior when feeling down, or perhaps you’re frowning because life’s not as perfect as society would have you believe. But if you find yourself feeling down or stressed more often than not, it might be time to rethink what you know about smiling. Several health benefits come from smiling. Smiling makes you feel better. It’s been shown that forcing yourself to smile can cause positive emotions and produce a happier outlook. Most studied people said they felt better after making a fake smile, which doesn’t even have to be a full grin if it makes you feel better. Smiling also reduces stress and increases tolerance levels. Below are some benefits of smiling.

Lowers Stress

Smiling is an effective stress reducer, which shows that smiling can be an effective method to help manage stress, anxiety and other general feelings of unhappiness in a particular person. One study showed that people who smiled for 10 minutes had a reduced heart rate and blood pressure compared to those who didn’t smile. This means that smiling allows your body to regulate itself more efficiently. However, it’s important to note that not all unhappy people respond similarly.

Smiling Elevates Mood

Feelings of happiness are directly related to facial expressions. Researchers have suggested that the more a person smiles, the happier they feel. Many studies have been done to prove this theory, and one study even showed that facial muscles work harder when attempting to smile, even when expressions aren’t genuine.

Smiling Boosts the Immune System

Although there is still some debate about this topic, most researchers agree that smiling, laughing, singing, and other emotional expressions can aid the immune system in many ways. It has been shown to increase the number of white blood cells fighting infections. This increase in white blood cells can also help stave off colds and other illnesses. Since our immune systems are directly related to our moods and emotions, keeping them active and healthy is essential by expressing yourself often and smiling while you do it.

Smiling Makes You Attractive

As contagious as smiling is, it’s not all bad. Some claim that a smile can make you more attractive to potential partners. Research has shown that when a person puts on a happy face and looks at someone they find attractive, they will smile back at them more often than if they aren’t wearing a smile. Although it may seem like a stretch, compelling evidence shows that smiling makes you more likely to attract people to you.

Smiling Helps You Stay Positive

Keeping a positive attitude is essential to happiness. We may not always be able to control how we feel, but we can control how other people react when they see us. A smile goes a long way and can help people feel good around you, even when you’re down. If nothing else, force a fake smile and feel better about your life.

Smiling Helps You Live Longer

A study done at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health found that those who smiled significantly had a 50 percent lower risk of death than those who didn’t. These results were so convincing that the researchers dubbed smiling “the happy face exercise.” They also noted that this is independent of other positive behavior, such as laughing and singing, which also have significant health benefits. Once again, you can’t always control how you feel, but you can control how you show others your feelings.

Key Takeaway

Smiling is a happy habit that makes you feel better and more attractive, lowers your stress levels, increases your immune system, and even helps you live longer. Smiling should always be practiced and encouraged as a great habit.