Smile Study: Are Selfies linked to Happiness?

September 15th, 2016

Gilbert Dentist: Are Selfies linked to Happiness?

Feeling blue? Stressed about a college class or difficult situation at work? Taking a “selfie” whether that’s with a selfie stick or the old-fashioned way, may actually be more useful than just an exercise in narcissism. According to a study out of the University of California, Irvine, regularly taking selfies with your mobile device and sharing those photos with friends may actually make you a happier person. This simple but deliberate action may be a useful tool in combating unhappiness.

The goal of this study was to better understand the effects of “selfies” and other photo taking on self-perceptions, self-efficacy and pro-social emotions. The students involved in the study were asked to record their moods three times a day with smartphone apps along with details of events that may have positively or negatively affected their emotional state that day. The users were asked to take three types of photos. A selfie, a photo of something that made themselves happy or a picture of what the photographer believed would make the person they were sending the photo to happy.

The results? Those who took the selfie reported increased self confidence and comfort. Those who took photos of objects that they personally enjoyed reported feeling more appreciative and reflective. Finally, the students who sent photos to others of subject matter they thought the recipient would enjoy reported increased calm and decreased stress. Contrary to the popularly held position that technology is a detriment to our overall health and happiness–this study suggests that there is plenty of good that smartphones can provide other than just making our lives and communication easier.

Want to make sure your selfie smile is looking spectacular when you share it with your friends and family? Contact your Gilbert dentist, Lifetime Family Dental, to schedule your cosmetic dentistry appointment or general checkup.

Images used under creative commons license – commercial use (9/15/2016) Benjamin Linh VU (Flickr)