Brrr, judging by the drop in temperature, autumn has well and truly arrived. Bringing with it gloomy weather, shorter days, and the worry of rising energy bills as the central heating goes on.
No big surprise then, that the move into autumn can have a negative impact on our mood.
And our smiles!
In fact, according to a recent OnePoll study, 75% of people surveyed believe their mood is directly affected by the cold, dark days of autumn and winter. A third of people also admitted to smiling less during the colder months.
Not only does this add to the misery of winter but it can also have a negative impact on overall health.
Want to know more about why smiling through the seasons (even the rainy ones!) is so important? Here the team at The Harley Street Smile Clinic explain…
Why smiling is essential
It makes everyone feel better
It’s a proven fact that smiling makes you feel better. Releasing endorphins – the body’s natural ‘feel good’ chemicals – a simple smile has the power to relieve stress and lift your mood.
But the benefits don’t stop with you.
Of the 2000 Brits who took part in the poll, three-quarters revealed that a smile from someone has the power to brighten their day. 28% claimed that being on the receiving end of a heartfelt smile is even better than receiving a gift (that’s Christmas sorted!).
Smiling is also contagious, so not only can your smile help to put a spring in someone else’s step, it can cause them to smile in return – spreading the joy!
It’s a marker of mental and physical health
With dips in daylight and temperatures, there’s often a corresponding dip in mental and physical health. So keeping a check on your smile can not only monitor dental health but overall well-being too.
How so? Because visible changes in oral health such as the condition of gums, can be a signal of underlying health conditions, including high blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease. Spotting signs early can be critical.
Similarly, smiles are an outward indication of emotions. If you’re smiling less, why? It could be a sign that you need to take action to balance your feelings.
How the change in seasons can impact your smile
Change in temperature
The shift in temperatures as we move from one season to another can be a key cause for keeping smiles under wraps, with cold weather leading to increased sensitivity.
Breathing through your mouth on cold days can trigger dental pain – enough of a reason to stop anyone smiling. And prolonged exposure can antagonise tooth problems and ultimately lead to cracks.
Change in diet
Don’t be fooled into thinking that when it comes to diet it’s summer that’s the problem – frozen sweet treats, fruity cocktails – none are ideal but that doesn’t mean autumn isn’t guilty of doing harm.
As colder weather sets in, we’re naturally drawn toward warming, comfort foods – picking red wine over chilled white, treating ourselves to hot chocolates, eating less fruit etc. All of which has a detrimental impact on smile health and the colour of teeth (darker food and drinks promote staining).
So how do you protect your smile?
- Proper brushing
Did you slip into laid-back holiday mode over the summer? Guilty of irregular brushing, or worse still, forgetting to brush! Then it’s time to get back on the oral health bandwagon.
Brush twice a day – ideally, first thing in the morning and last thing at night should be the minimum goal. If you can squeeze in an extra brush after meals, then all the better.
- Routine appointments
Did your dental check-up clash with your summer holiday? Have you rebooked?
Sticking to regular appointments is essential to stay on top of smile health and stop any potential problems from developing into serious issues.
- Use sensitive toothpaste
If the cold sets your teeth on edge and keeps you tight-lipped over winter, then something as simple as switching to a sensitive toothpaste can help.
Specialist tubes of ‘sensitive’ toothpaste are widely available from most major brands, clinically proven to relieve pain and reduce sensitivity.
Talk to the smile experts
The Harley Street Smile Clinic are here to help keep you smiling all year round.
With a team of skilled and experienced cosmetic dentists, we have a range of treatments available to protect, repair and improve all manner of cosmetic dental concerns.
So whether it’s a chipped tooth, gummy smile or embarrassing yellowing that’s holding back your smile, we can help. Why not take advantage of our free e-consultation now? Upload an image of your smile, tell us what you’d like to change about it, and we’ll be back in touch to discuss all the options available to you.
Generally happy with your smile but just feeling a little flat? Then check out our popular mini smile makeover. It’s the perfect seasonal pick-me-up.