Advanced Smiling: Lessons from Your Grandchildren


One of the perks of grandparenting is an education in how to smile. Babies are the experts. They smile in the womb and continue after they’re born. Smiling is innate, not learned; this we know because even blind babies smile.

Children smile as many as 400 times a day. That’s a lot more than the general population, with 30% smiling more than 20 times a day and about 14% smiling less than five times a day. Although we tend to smile less as we age, we smile more in the presence of other smilers. Smiling is contagious.

While it’s not necessarily true that it requires more muscles to frown than to smile, we know intuitively that smiling is good for us. Even the research that confirms it will make you smile. In a recent study at Wayne State University, Major League Baseball players who were smiling on their 1952 baseball card lived an average of seven years longer than players with no smile.

How does this work? As Darwin discovered, human beings feel better when they smile. And when we feel better, our bodies can relax, heal and thrive. Better digestion, stronger immune system—the list goes on.

Therefore, let nothing compromise your smile. See your dentist regularly. With dental coverage from your association and AMBA, you can help ensure you see your dentist regularly, while saving money on everything from routine visits to expensive procedures.

Even when we’re in a bad mood, smiling has been proven to lift our spirits. That’s how powerful a smile can be—as any baby will tell you.



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