How do smiles around the world compare?

A smile makes the world go around. This is true, really. Think about all the smiles around the world that are made at the end of hard working days, hard made decisions, top changes and even those not so hard like the ones people make while resting at their favorite locations for relaxation.

Researchers have found that smiling for joy is instinctive behavior. Even blind babies are known to smile at the sound of their mother’s voice. Paul Ekman’s study of the fore tribe in Papua New Guinea also suggests the universality of smiling as members of the tribe attributed smiles to the description of situations in the same way we would. But as far as the social requirements for smiling are concerned, these vary dramatically from culture to culture so question is: Is smiling the same across the world? Let’s see!

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Smiling in Thailand is thought to be the correct response to almost any given situation. South East Asians in general are known for their smiles, with Indonesia scoring the highest in a 2009 global customer service survey for smiling.

Requirements to smile at customers are considered unnecessary and artificial. Smiling is more likely to be reserved for genuine displays of emotion. This is for Russians who are not known for smiling automatically in social settings.

The Japanese culture is traditionally thought of as one that suppresses strong displays of emotion. People are less likely to smile or frown with their mouths in a social situation, or smile for a driver’s license photo. The Japanese take emotional cues from people’s eyes more frequently than their mouths. This is reflected in the difference between Western emoticons and Japanese emoji.

Smiley face – Western : )          Japanese ^_^

Sad face – Western : (              Japanese ;_;

Surprised – Western :-O         Japanese O_O

Winking face – Western  ;- )   Japanese ^_~

Angry face – Western >:-(      Japanese >_<

Like the Japanese, South Koreans have traditionally refrained from smiling frivolously in public and believe that smiling without appropriate cause indicates shallowness and lack of dignity. Recently, however, a media storm has arisen over a new cosmetic procedure that creates a perma-smile. Also nicknamed, the ‘Joker smile’, the ‘Smile Lipt’ surgery corrects drooping lips for those unhappy with their neutral, relaxed expression.

The USA: Smiling is considered polite and is generally a prerequisite for social situations. Americans are often thought more likely to smile at strangers walking down the street than Europeans. ‘Service with a smile’, is an American tradition. This type of enforced, superficial smile has been dubbed the ‘Pan-Am Smile’, after the American airline company whose hostesses were required to look happy at all times.

So let’s conclude, regardless of where in these countries you may live it is in common that great smiles do not come naturally by birth. As your teeth are also important part of your smile if not aligned correctly they will always be an obstacle to your perfect smiles you want to share with others. Invisalign braces are now available and simple to get in three steps, find the doctor in your area and start with step one, it is an investment in your smiley, happier and brighter future.