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Try A Healthy Dose of Smiling

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What are the Benefits of a Smile?

We work in a profession where we are frequently under a lot of stress. There is scientific information that proves a smile can be physically and emotional beneficial. The article below examines these health benefits from a simple smile.

Try A Healthy Dose of Smiling

Let’s face it, we work in a profession where we are frequently under a lot of stress. Stress has been linked to a number of health problems, such as obesity, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, heart disease along with other illnesses.

We deal with patients – and their families – who are often hurting physically or emotionally or both. Add to the mix the workplace pressures that come with the territory when delivering quality medical care.

As nurses on the front lines of patient advocacy, we may find ourselves frustrated if not overwhelmed.

A Simple Smile

But there is one thing we can always do to make it a bit better for ourselves and others, even in a small way. 

We can smile. 

"Simply using the same muscles as smiling will put you in a happier mood. That is because the use of those muscles is part of how the brain evaluates mood," as stated by Michael Lewis, a psychologist at Cardiff University.

As far back as the 1800's, One of the first scientists to suggest that our expressions may actually heighten our feelings was Charles Darwin. Charles Darwin labeled this theory as the "feedback loop."

Mother Teresa, who brought compassionate care to some of the world’s most impoverished people once said, “We shall never know the good that a simple smile can do.” 

Smiling can be beneficial for a person’s health and psyche. A smile can make a person happier and more productive at their workplace and/or in their personal life. 

There is Scientific Evidence to Support the Notion that Smiling is Beneficial

Endorphins

First, a smile can release endorphins that relieve stress and pain. 

University of Kansas scientists who are experts in the field of psychology report that a smile can help humans cope with various life stressors by lowering of the heart rate and blood pressure significantly.

Immune System

Furthermore, a smile may strengthen the immune system, according to research conducted by the National Institutes of Health. The study linked pleasurable stimuli and positive emotions to an increased immune response. 

Long Life

Lastly, a smile for success and happiness adds years to your life. Dr. Laura Kubzansky, an associate professor of society, human development and health at Harvard, discovered that such factors as strong social bonds, a positive outlook, emotional happiness, and enthusiasm can extend life expectancy.

Every day we walk past many people at our workplaces and we frequently do not know what is going on in their lives. 

We might pass an employee in another department overjoyed by the news of a promotion. 

Just as likely, we may walk past a wife who just learned that her spouse of 50 plus years has only a few days left on this earth.

We cannot change bad news into good. 

But we can smile.

Smiling and positive thinking have been shown to have a large number of health benefits for your psyche and physical health. So next time you walk by someone just give them a smile.

It might be just what they need to help them get through their day.

I read recently that the town that I live in currently in a recent poll was voted the seventh rudest city in the Country.  Wow!  How disappointed I was to see this. If everyone just smiled at each other, would this make our city a better place in which to live?

What Do You Think?

Would people be happier and healthier if they smiled more at each other?

Who knows for sure, but it sure would be worth a try! 

Share a smile and see how it makes you feel!

 

References

The 6 Health Powers behind Smiling, www.activebeat.com

Benefits of Smiling, www.netdoctor.co.uk

I have my Bachelor's degree in Nursing from Florida State University, and a Master's degree in Health services with an Emphasis on Wellness Promotion. I have 30 years of nursing experience with most in the Emergency Room and currently the PACU. I enjoy educating fellow nurses and patients on health and wellness.

4 Articles; 2,101 Profile Views; 8 Posts

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109 Posts; 485 Profile Views

One day, I was feeling blue. I rolled my windows down while waiting for the traffic lights to turn Green. A driver on my left hand was staring at me in the corner of my eye, so I turned my head towards him. He smiled. I mean...he was smiling at me ear to ear.🤣.  It changed the dynamic of my entire day. I saw him again.  He smiled again. I ended up smiling and laughing with him. 🤣. He and I exchanged smile and had little conversations when we stumbled each other at Starbucks nearby our workplace/college.  We were both locals and lived in the same community.

Since then, I smile at people. In the morning, I smile and greet my neighbors. It doesn't bother me anymore people does not reciprocate. I smile at children and women, not just men.  I don't smile much at certain people. I have to be appropriate in this act. Other people don't smile because of their teeth, so it is something we have to keep in mind.  People compliment my smile and my teeth. I do flash those while I still have teeth. 😁.  

Edited by Megarline

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4 Articles; 8 Posts; 2,101 Profile Views

That is so awesome! Thank you! Keep smiling!  😄😄😜

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