Smiling could prevent signs of aging by engaging the facial muscles that contribute to wrinkles if weakened, research suggests. Collagen fiber, a protein found in skin, contributes to the elasticity of skin, but the amount of it decreases as a person ages and causes loose skin and wrinkles. Performing smiling exercises is thought to strengthen the muscles that become weaker over time as the skin loses elasticity, which could result in a firmer looking appearance. When a person smiles, it engages the eye muscles and causes tiny crinkles in the corners of the eyes, so it is recommended to gently pull the area outward to make it smooth when performing smiling exercises, in order to prevent additional wrinkles.
More about smiling:
- Babies are thought to smile an average of 400 times per day, and adults smile about 20 times a day.
- The act of smiling, even when one is feeling unhappy, triggers the brain to release the same chemicals that are present in antidepressants and pain relievers.
- A genuine smile causes contraction of tiny muscles around the eye known as orbicularis oculi, but a forced smile does not. Fewer than 1% of all people are estimated to be able to control these muscles.