Smiling happens without much thought. When you watch a friend do something silly or embarrassing, you smirk. When a police officer lets you off without a ticket, you grin. And when you are recognized for your top performance in academics or at work, you beam. Smiling is a very natural response that shares our happiness with others.
But did you know that smiling also triggers activity in your brain? Yep, there’s a serious mind-body connection there, in your left frontal cortex to be exact, which is—not surprisingly—the area of your brain that registers happiness.
How often do you smile in a day? Do you smile when you meet new people? When you see your friends? Around your co-workers? How about your significant other? Your face has 44 muscles in it that allow you to make more than 5,000 expressions, many of which are smiles. Read on for seven reasons why smiling is good for you, your health and your social life! —Jenn