Tag Archives: Smile

Happy People’s Secret

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THE SECRET TO HAPPINESS

Author Unknown

A holy man was having a conversation with the Lord one day and said. “Lord, I would like to know what Heaven and Hell are like.

The Lord led the holy man to two doors.

He opened one of the doors and the holy man looked in. In the middle of the room was a large round table. In the middle of the table was a large pot of stew, which smelled delicious and made the holy man’s mouth water. The people sitting around the table were thin and sickly. They appeared to be famished. They were holding spoons with very long handles that were strapped to their arms and each found it possible to reach into the pot of stew and take a spoonful.

But because the handle was longer than their arms, they could not get the spoons back into their mouths. The holy man shuddered at the sight of their misery and suffering.

The Lord said, “You have seen Hell.

They went to the next room and opened the door. It was exactly the same as the first one. There was the large round table with the large pot of stew which made the holy man’s mouth water. The people were equipped with the same long-handled spoons, but here the people were well nourished and plump, laughing and talking.

The holy man said, “I don’t understand.”

“It is simple,” said the Lord. “It requires but one skill. You see they have learned the secret to happiness….. feed one another.”


WHERE DID IT ALL BEGIN?

From: gatewaytoJesus

Clarence Schultz

Let’s see…I think it started when Madeline Murray O’Hare complained that she didn’t want any prayer in our schools, and we said, OK.

Then someone said you had better not read the Bible in school-the Bible that says Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, and love your neighbor as yourself. And we said, OK.

Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn’t spank our children when they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem. And we said, an expert should know what he’s talking about, so we won’t spank them anymore.

Then someone said that teachers and principals better not discipline our children when they misbehave. And the school administrators said no faculty member in this school better touch a student when they misbehave because we don’t want any bad publicity, and we surely don’t want to be sued. And we accepted their reasoning.

Then someone said, let’s let our daughters have abortions if they want, and they won’t even have to tell their parents. And we said, that’s a grand idea.

Then some wise school board member said, since boys will be boys and they’re going to “do it” anyway, let’s give our sons all the condoms they want, so they can have all the “fun” they desire, and we won’t have to tell their parents they got them at school. And we said, that’s another great idea.

And then some of our top elected officials said that it doesn’t matter what we do in private as long as we do our jobs. And agreeing with them, we said it doesn’t matter to me what anyone, including the President, does in private as long as I have a job and the economy is good.

And then someone said let’s print magazines with pictures of nude women and call it wholesome down-to-earth appreciation for the beauty of the female body. And we said we have no problem with that.

And someone else took that appreciation a step further and published pictures of nude children and then stepped further still by making them available on the Internet. And we said they’re entitled to their free speech.

And the entertainment industry said, let’s make TV shows and movies that promote profanity, violence, and illicit sex. And let’s record music that encourages homosexuality, rape, drugs, murder, suicide, and satanic themes. And we said it’s just entertainment, it has no adverse effect, and nobody takes it seriously anyway, so go right ahead.

Therefore, now we’re asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don’t know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves. Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with… “we reap what we sow.”


 

(More Food For Thought follows these reflective questions.)

When I die where will I go?
What do I need to do to live forever?
Why do I believe what I do?
If what I believe isn’t true, would I want to know it?
Who has the answers?

 


daddy’s empty chair

— Author Unknown

A man’s daughter had asked the local minister to come and pray with her father. When the minister arrived, he found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two  pillows.

An empty chair sat beside his bed.

The minister assumed that the old fellow had been informed of his visit. “I guess you were  expecting me,” he said.

“No, who are you?” said the father.

The minister told him his name and then remarked, “I saw the empty chair and I figured you knew I was going to show up,”

“Oh yeah, the chair,” said the bedridden man. “Would you mind closing the door?”

Puzzled, the minister shut the door.

“I have never told anyone this, not even my daughter,” said the man. “But all of my life I have never known how to pray. At church I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, but it went right over my head. I abandoned any attempt at prayer,” the old man continued, “until one day, four years ago, my best friend said to me, ‘Johnny, prayer is just a simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus. Here is what I suggest…’”

‘Sit down in a chair; place an empty chair in front of you, and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It’s not spooky, because He promised, ‘I will be with you always.’ Then just speak to Him in the same way you’re doing with me right now.’”

“So, I tried it and I’ve liked it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day. I’m careful though. If my daughter saw me talking to an empty chair, she’d either have a nervous breakdown or send me off to the funny farm.”

The minister was deeply moved by the story and encouraged the old man to continue on the journey. Then he prayed with him, anointed him with oil, and returned to the church.

Two nights later the daughter called to tell the minister that her daddy had died that afternoon.

“Did he die in peace?” the minister asked.

“Yes. When I left the house about two o’clock, he called me over to his bedside, told me he loved me and kissed me on the cheek. When I got back from the store an hour later, I found him dead. But, there was something strange about his death. Apparently, just before Daddy died, he leaned over and rested his head on the chair beside the bed. What do you make of that?”

The minister wiped a tear from his eye and said, “I wish we could all go like that.”

From: inspire21

empty chair
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The Life Saving Station

Author Unknown

On a dangerous seacoast where shipwrecks often occur there was once a crude little life-saving station. The building was just a hut, and there was only one boat but the few devoted members kept a constant watch over the sea, and with no thought for themselves went out day and night tirelessly searching for the lost. Some of those who were saved, and various others in the surrounding area, wanted to become associated with the station and give of their time and money and effort for the support of its work. New boats were bought and new crews trained. The little life-saving station grew.

Some of the members of the life-saving station were unhappy that the building was so crude and poorly equipped. They felt that a more comfortable place should be provided as the first refuge of those saved from the sea. They replaced the emergency cots with beds and put better furniture in the enlarged building. Now, the life-saving station became a popular gathering place for its members, and they decorated it beautifully and furnished it exquisitely, because they used it as a sort of club. Fewer members were now interested in going to sea on lifesaving missions, so they hired life-boat crews to do this work. The life-saving motif still prevailed in this club’s decoration, and there was a symbolic life-boat in the room where the club initiations were held. About this time a large ship was wrecked off the coast, and the hired crews brought in boat loads of cold, wet and half-drowned people. They were dirty and sick and some of them had black skin and some had yellow skin. The beautiful new club was in chaos. So the property committee immediately had a shower house built outside the club where victims of shipwreck could be cleaned up before coming inside.

At the next meeting, there was a split in the club membership. Most of the members wanted to stop the club’s life-saving activities as being unpleasant and a hindrance to the normal social life of the club. Some members insisted upon life-saving as their primary purpose and pointed out that they were still called a life-saving station. But they were finally voted down and told that if they wanted to save lives of all the various kinds of people who were shipwrecked in those waters, they could begin their own life-saving station down the coast. They did.

As the years went by, the new station experienced the same changes that had occurred in the old. It evolved into a club, and yet another life-saving station was founded. History continued to repeat itself, and if you visit that sea coast today, you will find a number of exclusive clubs along that shore. Shipwrecks are frequent in those waters, but most of the people drown.

From: Inspirational Christian Stories

Horse Laughs

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Before you read the funny things below, I will relate a story about  a horse, a guardian angel, and God’s watch care over us.

One day a young man was riding his horse near a town outside Orlando, Florida. He had been riding a good distance and he was thirsty and tired. The young man saw a lake at the bottom of a hill and decided to go down there to drink. It was about thirty feet from the water when his horse suddenly stopped abruptly. The young man got off the horse and the horse made a loud sound as if giving a warning. As the boy started toward the water the horse knocked him to the ground. The young man was angry with his usually gentle horse. He picked himself up and attempted to go to the water to drink again. The horse again knocked him down and jumped up and down making noises. This time instead of getting mad, he got smart. He looked carefully into the tall lake grass and saw a huge shadow under the water. He started walking away from the water holding the horse reins in his hand. About thirty feet away he found a large rock. He came near the lake water and threw the rock at the large shadow. When the rock hit near the shadow a large alligator came rushing out of the water. It was twelve feet long. The boy got away but was shaking with fear. He realized that he was almost an alligator meal. His horse, or an angel, or God had saved his life. After calming down, he rode home grateful for his horse’s attention to God’s warning that he did not understand. Sometimes animals are more aware of God and his angels than we are.

Simposious

 

Horse Laughs

A blonde decides to try horseback riding, even though she has had no lessons or prior experience.

She mounts the horse unassisted and the horse immediately springs into motion. It gallops along at a steady and rhythmic pace, but the blonde begins to slip from the saddle. In terror, she grabs for the horse’s mane, but cannot seem to get a firm grip. She tries to throw her arms around the horse’s neck, but she slides down the side of the horse anyway.

The horse gallops along, seemingly impervious to its slipping rider. Finally, giving up her frail grip, she leaps away from the horse to try and throw herself to safety.

Unfortunately, her foot has become entangled in the stirrup, she is now at the mercy of the horse’s pounding hooves as her head is struck against the ground over and over.

As her head is battered against the ground, she is mere moments away from unconsciousness when to her great fortune… the Walmart manager sees her and shuts the horse off.

*´’`°¤¸¸.•’´?`’•.¸¸¤°´’`*

One day a man passed by a farm and saw a beautiful horse. Hoping to buy the animal, he said to the farmer: “I think your horse looks pretty good, so I’ll give you $500 for him.”

“He doesn’t look so good, and he’s not for sale,” the farmer said.

The man insisted, “I think he looks just fine and I’ll up the price to $1,000.”

“He doesn’t look so good,” the farmer said, “but if you want him that much, he’s yours.”

The next day the man came back raging mad. He went up to the farmer and screamed, “You sold me a blind horse. You cheated me!”

The farmer calmly replied, “I told you he didn’t look so good, didn’t I?”

*´’`°¤¸¸.•’´?`’•.¸¸¤°´’`*

One day, while I was petting a Shetland Pony at the zoo, a friend of mine asked, “How are you today?.” I responded, “I’m feelin a little hoarse.”

*´’`°¤¸¸.•’´?`’•.¸¸¤°´’`*

A city dweller came to a farm and saw a beautiful horse. He decided he had to have the animal.

He bargained with the farmer and the farmer finally sold him the horse. The city man jumped on the horse and said, “Giddyup!” The horse didn’t budge.

The farmer explained, “This is a special kind of horse. He’ll only move if you say, ‘Praise the Lord.’ To stop him, you have to say, ‘Amen.'”

Keeping this in mind, the new owner yelled, “Praise the Lord!” whereupon the horse took off with great speed. Soon horse and rider were headed for a cliff.

Just in time the rider remembered to say “Amen!” The horse came to a screeching halt right at the edge of the cliff. Relieved, the rider raised his eyes to heaven and exclaimed, “Praise the Lord!”

From: Truthbook.com

Lovely Coincidence

 

 

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lovely coincidence

— Author Unknown

“In 1945, there was a young boy of 14 in a concentration camp. He was tall, thin but had a bright smile. Every day, a young girl came by on the other side of the fence. She noticed the boy and asked him if he spoke Polish, and he said yes. She said he’d looked hungry, and he said he was. She then reached in her pocket and gave him her apple. He thanked her and she went on her way. The next day, she came by again, bringing with her another apple which she gave him. Each day, she walked by the outside of the fence, hoping to see him, and when she did, she happily handed him an apple in exchange for conversation.

One day, he told her not to come by anymore. He told her he was being shipped to another concentration camp. As he walked away with tears streaming down his face, he wondered if he’d ever see her again. She was the only kind soul he’d seen across the fence.

He made it out of the concentration camp, and immigrated to America. In 1957, his friends had fixed him up on a blind date. He had no idea who the woman was. He picked her up, and during dinner began talking of Poland and the concentration camp. She said she was in Poland at that time. She said she used to talk to a boy and gave him apples daily. He asked if this boy was tall, skinny and if he had told her that she shouldn’t come back because he was leaving. She said yes.

It was her, the young girl who came by every day to give him apples. After 12 years, after the war and in another country… they had met again. What are the odds? He proposed to her on that very night and told her he’d never again let her go. They are still happily married today.

Now that, my friends, is a love story.”

apple girl

Three Keys to Finding True Happiness

 

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THREE KEYS TO FINDING TRUE HAPPINESS

Last Friday I’m riding around town fretting over the cost of gas, the cost of food, and my yet-to-arriveeconomic stimulus check. I heard something on a talk radio program so profound that I nearly had to pull off to the side of the road to write it down. The substitute host for the Neal Boortz show, Herman Cain, had just wrapped up a call from someone lamenting the nation’s low happiness factor. Apparently, some statistician recently determined that most American’s are unhappy. I personally believe despite the negative media we have much to be happy about. Cain went on to describe his three personal keys to happiness, and I have adopted them as well. My mood instantly improved the moment I heard these three ideas.

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photo by heydrienne

THE THREE KEYS TO HAPPINESS

  1. Something to Do. How many times have we felt unhappy with life because we simply had too much idle time? I know it has happened in my own life. When I get bored, I get down, and I only snap out of it when I start to get busy again. The thing is, we have to recognize this pattern and stay busy to keep our mood elevated. Find a hobby. Volunteer your free time. Learn to cook. Coach youth sports. There are endless possibilities for “something to do” if we take the time to look.
  2. Something to Love. Friends and family are such an important element to our ultimate happiness. During a traveling phase at my last job I spent a number of lonely nights hundreds of miles away in a hotel room on business. I was in foreign surroundings, working in a job I didn’t particularly like, in an industry I didn’t believe in (credit/financial services). The one source of inspiration to get through those nights was my family. Even though my career situation has since improved, I still think of my wife and kids when I get down and can’t help but smile. If you are single, you may have a best friend that always knows just how to pick you up, or make you laugh when you want to cry. Pets can even be an incredible source of companionship, there to greet you at the end of a long day. I’ve had pets most of my life and marvel at their willingness to love us unconditionally.
  3. Something to Hope For. Everyone should have something to hope for. Something that drives them towards a goal. It’s been said that if you aim for nothing, you’ll hit it every time. Have something to aim for; a dream that you hold close and never let completely out of sight. When people lose hope they get complacent, and complacency often leads to a poor attitude. This self-perpetuating cycle of negativity can lead to serious depression, and ultimately harm cherished relationships. I know, I’ve been in a rut myself and I lost sight of the dreams I once held close. But all hope is never lost, you just may have to work a little harder temporarily to catch up and see those dreams around the next corner again.

“The only difference in a rut and a grave is six feet.” If you find yourself in a rut, stop digging. Start moving in the direction of your dreams and things will begin to improve. If your goal is debt freedom, stop charging to your credit cards and start paying all you can pay on outstanding debts. Do not be overwhelmed by the distance to the finish line. If your goal is to lose weight, do not focus on how far you are from your goal weight. Instead, take it one day, one meal, one bite, one workout at a time and begin to move in the direction of your dreams.

The bottom line is we are responsible for our own happiness. Government programs, promises from elected officials, and pats on the back from bosses may offer temporary mood boosts, but ultimately happiness is a self-induced state of mind. Be responsible for your own happiness. ( Citation: Three Keys to Finding True Happiness, by: Jason (Frugal Dad).

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The Art of Smiling

 (This article is from: Think Simple Now, The Art of Smiling}

By Tina Su, 2006, 'Smiling in Lhasa '
Photo by Tina Su

“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word,
a listening ear, and honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring,
all of which have the potential to turn a life around.”

– Leo F. Buscaglia

Actually, there isn’t any art behind it. Just that you were born to be happy, and you can show this happiness with that beautiful smile of yours. C’mon! Let’s see it. 🙂 Okay, good.

To some extent, we all know how to spot a genuine smile, basically this formula:

Genuine Smile = Crinkly Eyes

bbc-faces.jpg We are all sensitive to this genuine scale, so why then is it that when we cross paths with a stranger or casual acquaintance in the elevator, we give them a fake smile? That ‘polite smile’. You know what I’m talking about (don’t get me wrong, I do this too,unconscious at grocery stores, on streets, while waiting for something.). 

The lesson? Smile with your eyes! Feel it genuinely and it will come out naturally.

Extras: check out this quick interactive quiz from BBC to test out your ability to spot the difference between a real smile and a fake one.

Side Note: I am now smiling as I write this article. I love it! Thank you for reading and allowing me to express myself creatively.

A smile is so simple, yet so powerful. Some noticeable effects of externalizing your internal joy are:

  • People will be attracted to you – I don’t mean sexually (well, maybe that too), but people will feel drawn to your energy. When you smile more, you will carry an aura and poise that will draw people to you. People will look forward to being around you, knowing only that they feel great around you. People on the street, at work, your friends etc. We all like and want to be around happy and cheerful people, right?
  • Optimistic – You’ll feel more positive about yourself and the world.
  • Happiness & Joy – A smile is an expression of happiness and joy in you. Like an upward spiral, a smile will boost the happiness you feel.
  • Healthy – A smile can affect your internal state, which can have physiological impact on your physical and mental health.
  • Approachable – A smile is so welcoming and will make people feel more at ease.
  • Making Other People Happy – A smile has the power to make other people feel good about themselves. It’s heart-warming and has the power to cheer up others instantly.
  • Smiles Are Contagious – Others can quickly and easily catch it and will experience the above ‘side effects’.

Take The Smiling Challenge!

 

  • Smile at Strangers -You know those times when we cross paths with a stranger or accidentally catch someone’s gaze, and we (both) would suddenly look away in awkwardness or pretend we are looking at something else? Well, the challenge is to give them a big smile. A genuine smile, showing teeth and everything.Deepak Chopra talks about giving each person you encounter a small gift. I do this with a smile. Why not? It doesn’t cost us anything. Plus, it’s a lot more fun than feeling awkward and pretending you’re not there.I also love to see people’s reactions when you smile at them, and they aren’t expecting it. Some blush, and others are surprised and smile back, which makes me feel all warm inside.
  • I live in a part of downtown Seattle with lots of street hagglers and homeless people. People often ask me whether I get ‘harassed’ often. The answer is: sometimes. But they really are very nice, just like the rest of us. They too need attention and acknowledgment. So, give them a gift worth more than money.Next time someone asks you for money, don’t try to ignore them. Turn to them, smile warmly and tell them how you feel. If you don’t feel like giving money, just tell them “Sorry, I don’t have change now. Have a beautiful day!”Similarly, if something is trying to sell you something or ‘hitting-on’ you, simply turn to them, smile and say “No thank you.”I’ve found that it takes more energy to ignore and pretend to be very serious, than it is to smile. So smile! Make someone’s day!
  • Smile Fully -You know that half smile we give people when we’re trying to be polite? Like on an elevator, bumping in someone at the front door, or waiting in line. Why not practice giving them a real smile? It’ll be less awkward and you can potentially make someone’s day, or a new friend!
  • Smile at Work -Living under a routine, we can easily be in a zombie-like state when coming into work. We zip into work quickly following the same routines we’ve habituated. Our target is to get to work, and we can sometimes forget about the people around us, in other cubes/offices/departments. So, the challenge is to practice beaming with smile as you come into work. Smile genuinely with people you meet. Be completely pleased to see them. Make it a focus for the day, to bring more happiness into the lives of others. Ask them genuinely and infused with energy, “How are ya?” “How was your weekend?”Watch the smiles surface on their face.
  • A Small Compliment with Your Smile -When meeting or encountering people. Look for things you admire or like about them, however small, let them know. A small genuine compliment can go a long way to lift people’s spirits.

I’ve found it useful to be conscious of things that make me smile. You might want to spend a few minutes making a list of things that brings a smile to your face.

Some Moments That Make Me Smile are:

When Tommy (my eight pound Pomeranian doggie) does one of his tricks: spin in circles, playing dead, or his ‘moonwalk’ dance (that’s right, he moonwalks… *laughs*).

  • When I practice gratitude ‘sessions’
  • When I reach mini goals throughout the day.
  • When I read comments left by readers.
  • When savoring sweet taste of vanilla ice cream
  • When I do my happy dance, and make friends laugh with my ridiculousness.
  • When Adam (my partner) brings me food or chai in the morning as I’m working away on my laptop.
  • When my mother laughs

More Tips To Bring Smiles into Your Life

  • Smiling Journal – For two weeks, record the moments that brought out your wonderful smile. If you are ever feel down, flip through this book to be reminded of things that make you smile. Experience those moments and notice your state shift to a positive one. You cannot be both angry and smiling at the same time. I learned in physiological psychology that if the physical action conflicts with that of your feeling, the feeling inside will shift to match that of your outer sensation. One way to shift your emotion is to change your physiology.
  • Appreciation – Identify things that you are grateful for. Then focus on those things as much as possible.
  • Humor – Make a point to watch a comedy movie. To go a comedy club. Hang out with people who make you laugh.
  • Go On a Self Date – When we feel more connected with ourselves, we feel more joy and tend to naturally smile more.
  • Find Innocence – Observe a small child or a pet at play with total ease and freedom. Watch their innocence, enjoy their presence and yours. Are you smiling? Do you feel happy for them? That’s because you are connecting with the same innocence within yourself.

What makes you smile? Who made you smile today? Share your joy and happiness in a comment! See you there. *smiles*  ( Citation: Think Simple Now, The Art of Smiling).

 

What Does Your Smile Say

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What Does Your Smile Say About You?

By Joanne Barker

 

“Want to succeed in business, fill up your social calendar, and get more romance into your life? One secret may be in your smile.

Your smile — simple, straightforward, and most important, sincere — can attract more than admiring looks. A smiling face tells people that you’re an outgoing and intelligent person worth getting to know.

smiling woman

“When someone has a big smile, it shows they’re willing to open up and expose a part of themselves,” says Pamela McClain, DDS, president of the American Academy of Periodontology. Over the long term, smiling can benefit your health, perception at work, social life, and romantic status.  With that much at stake, it’s worthwhile to discover what your smile is saying about you — and how to interpret the smiles flashed your way.

Smiling Eyes Aren’t Just for the Irish

Many Americans look at the mouth to judge a person’s mood, but people smile for all sorts of reasons: anger, fear, embarrassment, confusion, to deceive. It’s really your eyes that give you away.

The muscles around the eyes can’t be forced to look happy. When people smile for real, their cheeks rise and the skin around their eyes bunches up. In fact, in certain countries where suppressing emotion is a cultural norm, people look more at each other’s eyes to gauge emotion.

A Smile Makes You Look Successful

“A smile conveys confidence and professionalism,” says Lily T. Garcia, DDS, DDS, MS, FACP, president of the American College of Prosthodontists. People who project a positive outlook are generally more open and flexible. They tend to cope better with challenges than people who are withdrawn and unsmiling.

A study that followed a group of women for 30 years shows the lifetime benefits of smiling. The women who displayed genuinely happy smiles in their college yearbook photos went on to have happier marriages and greater wellbeing.

In the same study, a group of strangers looked at the college photos and reported their assumptions about the women’s personalities. The women who smiled were judged to be more positive and competent than those who didn’t.

Turn that Frown Upside Down

Want to be happy? Just smile. Believe it or not, forcing yourself to smile can actually make you happier.

Paul Ekman, PhD, a psychologist who is an expert in facial expressions, taught himself to arrange the muscles in his face to make certain expressions. To his surprise, he found himself feeling the emotions that he was mimicking. When he raised his cheeks, parted his lips, and turned the corners of his mouth up, he felt happier.

Ekman and his research partner went on to do a study of college students to see if they, too, would feel happier by making themselves smile. The researchers measured the students’ brain activity while the students followed instructions to smile using the muscles in their cheeks and around their mouths.

Whether the students smiled spontaneously or on purpose, the activity in their brains was virtually the same. They felt happy.”

What Does Your Smile Say About You?

(continued)

Smile Anxiety

“Chipped or missing teeth, fillings, or discolored teeth are unveiled when your lips part to smile – so some people simply avoid it.

If you find yourself wanting to cover up your smile, you could be holding yourself back in more ways than you realize. “Life is much more challenging for people who are so self-conscious about their teeth they don’t want to smile,” McClain says. Make a date with your dentist to talk about your concerns and potential corrections. Many dental problems can be fixed.

One of McClain’s patients with excess gum tissue was ashamed of her short-looking teeth. “We did a procedure called crown lengthening, and it was amazing what a difference it made,” McClain says. “She was so much more self-confident.” Web MD, Joanne Barker, review by Dr.Alfred Wyatt Jr.DMD.

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