A Healthy Smile for Your Mental Health
Your oral health and your mental health are related. Studies show that smiling has positive benefits towards your mental health. These studies suggest that happier people tend to smile more and share those smiles with others. Let’s dive in to why smiling is good for you!
Smiling reduces stress: The act of smiling releases molecules and “feel-good” chemicals in the brain that help fight off stress and other negative emotions. Neurotransmitters, like dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins, are released and are responsible for the positive effects brought on by a smile. For example, endorphins work as pain relievers and serotonin acts as an antidepressant.
Smiles are contagious: Have you ever heard that yawns are contagious? Well, so are smiles. Studies have proven that if you smile at someone, they are more likely smile back than to not. Sharing a smile is not only good for you but also good for those around you. Just like smiles, laugher is contagious too! You never know how much you can impact someone’s day by spreading positivity.
Smiling helps make connections: A positive expression is welcoming and trustworthy. Social isolation increases your risk of dying by 50% because isolation can lead to negative mental outcomes, like cognitive decline and depression. Connecting with others also allows us to practice empathy and patience and helps us become more understanding and accepting of others.
Proper oral hygiene impacts your mood: Having poor hygiene or being embarrassed to show your teeth can affect your emotional well-being. Inflammation due to poor oral health can contribute to depression. Poor dental health also affects speech, which adds to social anxiety. For these reasons, and many more, it’s important to keep up with your hygiene routine of brushing, flossing, and routine visits to the dentist.
Now that you know some of the ways smiling makes a positive impact in your life, are you ready to show off your smile to the world? Are you concerned because you haven’t been to the dentist in a while? Don’t worry, we’re here to help you get excited about showing off your smile. We can start by completing a comprehensive exam and providing treatment plans that will help you achieve your oral health goals.
Call River Oaks Dental at 904-348-0416 or visit our website riveroaksdentaljax.com to schedule your next visit. Dr. Monteiro is accepting new patients and we can’t wait to see you soon!