Your smile may be telling others more than you realize. It reveals whether you’re an intelligent and outgoing person worth getting to know.
And your grin attracts more than a return smile. It’s the secret to getting the job you want, a promotion, or a date. Studies also show that over the long term, smiling even benefits your health.
Wondering what your smile may be revealing about you? Here are four surprising facts your smile is telling others about you.
How healthy you are
The simple act of smiling can transform the world around you—and your health. When you smile, your body releases chemical signals that help fight off stress.
Those feel-good neurotransmitters—endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin—are also released. This not only relaxes your body, but it also lowers your heart rate and blood pressure.
And when you feel good, you smile more, showing others how healthy you are.
One study reviewed yearbook pictures of college women looking for genuine smiles—those smiles where your eyes crinkle, the corners of your mouth are raised, and your cheeks elevate.
They followed up with these women after 30 years and found those with genuine smiles reported better health than women whose smiles were not as full.
How long your marriage will last
How long your marriage will last may be linked to your smile.
In a study in the 2009 journal Motivation and Emotion, the way people smiled in old photos (their smile intensity) was used to predict how long their marriages would last.
It was found that none of the biggest grinners divorced later in life. In comparison, 25 percent of the most straight-faced people photographed experienced divorce.
How quickly you get pregnant
Multiple studies show your smile can reveal how healthy you are. And for women, how fertile they are.
Studies show women with gum disease take an average of two months longer to conceive than women without.
“Our data suggest that the presence of periodontal disease is a modifiable risk factor, which can increase a woman’s time to conception, particularly for non-Caucasians,” said Hart, medical director of the Fertility Specialists of Western Australia. “It exerts a negative influence on fertility that is of the same order of magnitude as obesity.”
Researchers recommend that women considering pregnancy consult with their dentist to ensure they’re free from gum disease.
How much power you have
Smiles aren’t just about happiness. They also display your status in society.
One study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin found that high-powered people, as well as those who interacted with others of equal power, smiled mainly when they were happy. Those with less social power, in contrast, smiled regardless of how they felt.
Your smile is more powerful—and revealing—than you know. Smiling not only makes you feel better, but it also reveals who you are.
As a young boy, Dr. Arnold knew he wanted to be a dentist. Dr. E.I. Scrivner, Jr. was a family friend. And, getting to know him led young Fred to fall in love with the profession. Dr. Arnold is now recognized as one of the leading cosmetic dentists in the country. He’s accredited in cosmetic dentistry and a former Chairman of Accreditation for the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry. Dr. Arnold is a former member of the United States Air Force. He and his wife, Holly, live in Lexington, Kentucky where they’re raising their three daughters.