mature woman smiling
Dental Health

Six Ways a Smile Can Change Your Life

“A smile plays a critical role in how we feel about ourselves and how others see us,” says Dr. Leslie Pitner, an orthodontist and author of Improve Your Smile, Transform Your Life: A Life-Changing Guide to Orthodontics for Adults (www.drpitner.com).

Pitner says adults whose teeth – and consequently their smile – could benefit from braces often don’t think about that option. Even when they do, they are discouraged from following through because of dubious information that they have come to regard as fact. But clear and hidden braces are viable options.

A good smile, however, may be more important than most realize. It could be life-changing, in fact. Here are six reasons why:

  • Smiling can have an impact on numerous aspects of a person’s life, including their mood. Smiling activates the release of neuropeptides in our brains that work toward fighting off stress.
  • People who have crooked teeth tend to hide their smiles, making them less approachable and seemingly less friendly. The benefits of having a friendly personality, and more friends, are numerous.
  • Research has shown that when a person smiles, he or she seems more attractive to others.
  • Smiling releases serotonin in the brain, which serves as an anti-depressant, and endorphins that act as a natural pain reliever.
  • A nice smile tends to make a good first impression and convey a positive attitude and demeanor, something that job recruiters look for in candidates for employment.
  • According to Psychology Today, seeing an attractive, smiling face activates the brain’s region that processes sensory rewards. This suggests that a smile can make others feel rewarded.

A smile, and the confidence that goes with it, cannot only change you, it has the ability to change the world.

Dr. Leslie Pitner, author of Improve Your Smile, Transform Your Life: A Life-Changing Guide to Orthodontics for Adults (www.drpitner.com), is an orthodontist with a unique educational background that includes the study of art and psychology. She specializes in treating adult patients at her practice, Pitner Orthodontics, which was founded four decades ago by her father. Pitner completed her dental and orthodontic training at the University of North Carolina and later earned her master’s in applied positive psychology. Prior to becoming an orthodontist, she graduated from Williams College with a degree in art and also earned a master’s degree in art history from the University of Pennsylvania.