We all know the saying, “Laughter is the best medicine,” but did you know that smiling really does have many health benefits?

Besides making you happier, smiling can help reduce stress levels, lower blood pressure and boost your immune systems.

Here are four health benefits of smiling:

  • Increases Happiness – The British Dental Health Foundation conducted a study that shows that smiling dramatically improves mood. When you smile, your brain releases “feel-good” chemicals called endorphins which makes you feel happy.
  • Reduces Stress – Stress causes many physical reactions including increasing blood sugar levels, disturbing the natural function of the digestive system and increasing pulse rate. Smiling reduces levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, and gives you a quick burst of energy.
  • Lowers Blood Pressure – When you smile, your blood pressure increases briefly before dropping to below-normal levels. Since your breathing increases during this process, it allows more oxygen and nutrients to flow throughout your body, causing your blood pressure to decrease.
  • Boosts the Immune System – Since stress hormones decrease when you smile, it allows certain antibodies or immune cells to increase. This boost in your immune cells helps your body fight off illnesses like the common cold.

Now that you know why you should smile more, don’t let the condition of your teeth put you off from a good grin. Proper oral hygiene and regular visits to the dentist will help keep your pearly whites ready to show off a healthy smile.

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