The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Can forcing your cheeks into a smile make you feel happier?  (Read 3365 times)

Offline Michael Cochran

  • First timers
  • *
  • Posts: 1
    • View Profile
Michael Cochran  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Hi Chris,
 
I enjoy your 702/Cape Talk programme with Redi.
 
I saw on Brainiac a depressed man with a comedian trying to cheer him up. It didn't work and he remained glum. 
 
A pencil was put transversely into his mouth raising his cheeks and he felt much better and enjoyed the comedian's antics. 
 
Apparently the movement caused by the pencil triggered something which made him feel better.  Please confirm this as I find it very interesting and so do my fellow inmates in an old age home.
 
Kind regards
 
Michael Cochran

What do you think?


 

Offline Chelsie

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Posts: 49
    • View Profile
Can forcing your cheeks into a smile make you feel happier?
« Reply #1 on: 03/08/2009 11:00:49 »
There has been some recent neuro research that has shown that the act of smiling (even a forced smile) triggers a release of serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter or the brain's "feel good" chemical. People with depression are often linked with decreased serotonin levels and this research shows that they can increase their levels by smiling or acting happy even if they are not. I doubt the increases is enough to replace depression medications. It is most likely something you would add on top of medications and therapy. Although those without depression could definitely benefit by increasing their personal happiness.

Here is an article on serotonin if you are interested: http://www.anxiety-and-depression-solutions.com/insight_answers/serotonin.php [nofollow]
« Last Edit: 03/08/2009 11:15:14 by Chelsie »
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Can forcing your cheeks into a smile make you feel happier?
« Reply #1 on: 03/08/2009 11:00:49 »

 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums