If you’re missing TheDailyFloss.com, you missed World Smile Day. Don’t make that mistake this year!

SINCE ITS CREATION more than 50 years ago, Harvey Ball’s smiley face has become an international symbol of happiness. The simple yellow circle, with black eyes and friendly upturned rictus, has made cameos in movies, on T-shirts and plenty more. Over the years, though, Ball felt the smiley face was overexposed, that people were losing sight of its original purpose to spread cheer. And so World Smile Day was born.

First celebrated in 1999 and always occurring on the first Friday in October, World Smile Day promotes that particular expression of happiness so beloved to dentists worldwide, as well as acts of kindness. Ball died in 2001; his legacy will live on as long as there are people with teeth to bare.

Some ways we celebrated World Smile Day in 2020,a year that certainly could have used a lot more happiness:

    • Sent letters instead of texts
    • Left cookies for the USPS
    • Paid for the person behind us in the drive-thru lane
    • Picked up trash
    • Actually turned the camera on in a Zoom meeting
    • Donated blood
    • Watered a neighbor’s garden
    • And, of course, smiled at others. 🙂

As Ball once said, “Do an act of kindness. Help one person smile.” Words to live by in 2021 and beyond.

Be sure to check out TheDailyFloss.com, refreshed every weekday with news, oddities and other items of interest to dentists everywhere.