Psychology and physiology of a smile…

ann-smile-5Smiling… not only lifts your spirits but  that of those around you. A smile uses muscles that stimulate us to feel better. When you smile you feel better, even when you are feeling down.

“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Our faces have muscles with the ability to animate our faces to smileface1express and to show how we feel, think and emote at any given time. Our feelings and emotions direct that animation of the muscles either naturally or they can be forced and faked. Take an actor for example: While acting they can use their body as an instrument to express feelings and emotions that will illicit feelings and emotions in those watching. We all have that ability in every moment and every day of our lives that will affect not only us but those around us.

???????????????????????????????I love to smile. I once had a surgery where my cheeks were swollen for a few weeks and I couldn’t smile. It was a horrible feeling not to be able to smile. It made me feel so down inside not to be able to smile. I so wanted to smile but couldn’t and my smile was distorted when I tried. I was amazed how not being able to smile affected my mood, my feelings and everything about me. Then when my face became less swollen, and I could smile a bit, I felt better.  When I could fully smile again, I felt great! Smiling affected my whole body, my mood, my spirit… everything about me.

A smile affects your physiology and that of those around you.

The Psychological Study of Smiling

ann-smile5That experience made me realize how wonderfully good smiling made me feel. It lifts me up and makes me feel so good inside.  Think of people with bad teeth that don’t smile and children with cleft palates who can’t smile… when these things are corrected and they are able to smile… their whole face lights up. Their mood changes along with that of everyone around them. A smile affects the energy in your eyes, in your body, in everything about you. Smiling affects health and well-being.

You can smile with your eyes, your lips and with your whole face. There are all kinds of smiles.  But a genuine smile lights  up your eyes, your whole face and affects your whole body along with the energy it carries and emits.

The muscles of expression located around the mouth are the depressor anguli oris, therisorius, the zygomaticus major, the zygomaticus minor, and the levator labii superioris (see above image, highlighted in blue). All of these muscles, specifically the zygomaticus muscles, are involved with smiling; they pull the orbicularis oris (the circular muscle of your mouth) upwards. These muscles are innervated by the various branches of the facial nerve (VII), which — when the muscles are activated — send signals to the brain that you are smiling.

From there, endorphins are released into the bloodstream from the pituitary gland and the brain and spinal cord from the hypothalamus. Endorphins are opiod (chemicals that bind to opiate receptors) peptides that act as neurotransmitters. Think of endorphins as the body’s natural painkillers, or opiates; they are released in times of stress (good and bad), exercise, excitement, pain, love, and other emotional states, and you feel awesome because of them

???????????????????????????????Smile more. Smile lots. Smile at others.  Smiling is contagious.  When you smile it lifts the energy. A smile creates openness… a channel for positive communication.

Smile at yourself in your mirror. Lift your spirits along with those around you.



54 thoughts on “Psychology and physiology of a smile…”

  1. Ayn, you have one the most beautiful smiles in the world. Your inner beauty shines brightly. Cool article. Keep smiling. It’s lights up the internet and the world of many are made brighter because of you.

  2. WOW! You write great stuff and have the best smile! Interesting info on smiling, never thought of it in depth but makes sense.

  3. Lady you have the best smiles. He makes me smile just seeing your smile. Think of all the good your smile does. You are a smiling angel

  4. Stunning and brilliant with a magnificent smile, it’s the inner beauty that shows in your smile, your eyes and lights up your face.

  5. I tried to teach my kids not to stay mad about things, it is easy to be mad if a person looks for a reason. it is good for all of us to be happy .

  6. Your smile lights up the world. Thank you for this article. I am going to smile more and often.

  7. Ayn, are you an angel sent from God to say all the right things at the right time? I think you are. What you write is perfection. It makes people think. It brings awareness of the world and self. You were writing the truth about the government and media years ago. You were waking people up and you write truth about relationships, religion, psychology, it’s amazing your wisdom and knowledge. My wife and I read your articles often and we talk about them. We think you are a gift from God to the world. Thank you for being you. Merry Christmas and God bless you.

  8. I agree, plus people like people that smile. You have it! I am trying to improve, I do smile and have fun,just think I can work on it.

  9. Your Smile not only suits you but kind of Contagious xxx at once making others happy,smiling too.

  10. What we do in life, lives on inside us, long after ambition and fear lie frosted and opaqued on forgotten shores. What we do in life,Reflectsvon the lives of are children. more than what we think or say, is what we are to give them I better life we had growing up.breaking a cycle to take offers of get that edge on compassion from big hearted kind Angels. (Gregory David Robert)

  11. Excellent message. Good works, Miss Ayn. Merry Christmas. You are a lady with a magnificient smile.

  12. Nectar of life , when smile gets reflected in your eyes , eyes where spirit wears it and Smile beomes SPIRITUAL

  13. You are obviously a very photogenic lady in all respects, beautiful face gorgeous smile sultry warm eyes, but the picture on the spiral staircase, is just stunning and extremely exotic, erotic & very sensual.

  14. Playful Spirit, energy and your infectious smile
    You are singularly spectacular and a woman like you should be told often and sincerely..

  15. Great write-up. Wisdom !! ☺ Smile ☺ is
    Contagious, I go a step further to say it is
    Such article can be written and people would
    Like and Enjoy but Coming from you, one feels like… Say.. an Expert Physicist is teaching
    Physics. To learn from most suitable highly Educated God Gifted Experienced X-pert. Learning is easy and all Fundamentals are clear. May God bless you. Let your contagious
    Smile ☺ infect all. Looking at you explained the Process of Smiling ☺ more than those Muscles etc.
    Nothing like a Smile ☺ on friends face.

  16. What a countenance filled with so much blood, life, hope, passion and happiness. A truly beautiful smile.

  17. Beautiful is not good enough or expressive enough a word for you and your smile.

  18. True article. You see things from the place you are looking from. When you smile it lifts your spirits and that of others. Excellent article.

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