Smile! It's good for you, others


Want to make a difference today for someone? It's as simple as turning that frown you have upside down.

"It can take your mood from something that might be a little bit down and shift it to something that might be a little more upbeat," explained clinical psychologist Dr. Scott Bea with Cleveland Clinic.

Bea says a smile can not only change your mood, but it can also be contagious.

"And now, for encountering somebody else, and looking in their eyes and smiling, often smiles are infectious. So, we know it's a way that lifts other people up, too," he added.

Bea says smiling when you're in a bad mood will offer you a different energy every time you try it, but staying mad - won't.

Bea says one study found even forcing a smile can genuinely decrease your stress levels. This may help boost your immune system because it is stimulated when you relax.

Smiling also releases endorphins, which are natural pain relievers and make us feel better. You can also lower your blood pressure by flashing your pearly whites, and smiling makes you more attractive to others.

So, Bea says if you find yourself being overwhelmed by negative emotions, it is better to literally "grin and bear it."

"Anytime you're feeling tense, overwrought - annoyed, you might try competing with that with a smile in order to create that conversion much more smoothly and once you start doing that a little bit it becomes a powerful tool," he said.