Have you ever been sitting in an interview and either felt like you forgot to check your teeth beforehand, or forgot to brush them, or—worse yet—felt unable to kick off a meeting with even a single smile?
It’s a challenge for millions of Americans, and it certainly isn’t fair, but people with a “serious look” (or a specific lack of natural smiles) can struggle greatly in their professional lives, even finding themselves without a job offer they’re otherwise qualified for.
So, what’s the psychology behind this insufferable truth that being “too serious” has a direct impact on your ability to thrive professionally?
Let’s review the science first…
When you experience anything that brings about positive, uplifting vibes, neurons travel through the cortex of your brain, signaling the muscles around the mouth to show those pearly whites. A smile is our natural reaction to joy, amusement, and contentment.
Once this reaction begins, a truly genuine smile can be observed elsewhere in the face, such as the crinkle around your eyes. Or, ever hear someone say that a person has a “sparkle” in his or her eyes? This is our way of recognizing a genuine smile over a fake one.
Simply put, your ability to effortlessly, unabashedly and genuinely smile makes you a more likable person. And it goes without saying that being more likable can in turn help you get a job or make a career…all because of that ability to smile assuredly.
Smiling at people makes them feel good about you – it’s one of the most fundamental human reward signals that displays friendliness, trustworthiness and honesty.
Ways a smile can improve your professional life
Much of the time, patients steer clear of smiling when they feel they have “bad teeth.” When a person who doesn’t feel confident about their smile does face the underlying health issues, or seeks the cosmetic dental treatments, they can finally begin to move past the trauma and on to a successful and more self-assured professional life.
So, how does that genuine smile improve your professional life? Below, we’ve listed a few ways in which it can improve certain areas of your life, including professional, and what the effects of the change would bring:
- Improved Health – having strong teeth and gums allows you to consume all kinds of food, allowing you to enjoy each meal and also get all the necessary nutrients and properly digest food.
- Improved Attractiveness – the saying “a happy child is the prettiest/most handsome” isn’t a “thing” for no reason. Smiling makes a person radiate positivity. Being able to smile without a second-thought is invaluable to a person’s happiness—and it plays in your favor with how comfortable you make bosses and colleagues feel.
- Improved Self-esteem – the physical act of smiling actually improves your emotional state by sending happy signals to your brain, which releases endorphins, in turn boosting your mood.1 You also feel more confident, are perceived as confident, and help others feel more confident, too. This is routinely needed at work.
- Better Relationships – there might be no better way to make a person feel than by smiling at them, or reciprocating a smile. When someone is happy, and you share in the moment, it will be smiles all around…especially if that person is your boss, a colleagues or business partner.
- Improved Speech – tooth abnormalities can affect how you pronounce things. Being able to speak clearly will always be valuable at work—it improves your chances of being understood, so that work can get done and everyone can collaborate efficiently.
How to live a better personal life with an enhanced smile
Some of the ways in which patients often pursue a more confident and healthier smile, thereafter reporting improvements in their social and professional lives, include:
- Teeth Whitening
- Enamel Shaping and Contouring
- Clear Aligner Trays
- Dental Implants
We here at Dr. Marchbanks’s office want you to feel confident and to thrive in your professional life! Call us today, and we’ll be more than happy to make your smile reflect how you really feel on the inside.
Prevention is always better than the cure – so make sure you practice good oral hygiene. The better you take care of your teeth, the less damage control you’ll need to do later on.