We smile when we are happy, and we frown when we are sad. Simple.
Don’t believe me? Take a look at these emoticons:
Melinda Wenner (Scientific American) writes that our emotions are reinforced and even driven by our corresponding facial expressions. Charles Darwin wrote in 1872: “The free expression by outward signs of an emotion intensifies it.” In a 2009 study, psychologists at the University of Cardiff in Wales found that people, whose ability to makes full facial expression is compromised by cosmetic Botox injections, are happier. Apparently, if you cannot frown, it is harder to be depressed.In an article in New York Times, Richard A. Friedman suggests that our facial expression, and not our brain, plays a bigger role in influencing how we feel.
Does that mean if I were unable to scrunch up my face to resemble ‘ouch,’ my paper cut or scraped knees or broken arm won’t hurt as much? Can I alleviate pain if I don’t express it?
Botox your way to happiness sounds tempting, but what about cost? According to American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) 2012 statistics report, the national average fee for a Botox treatment was $369. The fee does not include anesthesia or other expenses.
Also, if Botox prevents you from frowning,by the same logic it prevents you from smiling. If our facial expression corresponds with our emotions, then doesn’t our inability to smile affects our happiness?
Look at the picture below and be inspired. To me, her mischievous smile announces: “Wrinkles? What wrinkles. I feel young and I still have fun.” Attagirl!