For years dentists have told their patients that proper oral health and a good smile is important, but now there is evidence to back it up. Professors at Virginia Commonwealth University asked for volunteers between the ages of 10 and 16 to rank pictures of teens in terms of perceived intelligence, leadership, popularity, and sports ability. They then altered images of the teens so that half had crooked teeth while the others had perfect straight teeth. In every category except for intelligence, the pictures with straight teeth were ranked higher than those with crooked or uneven teeth.
People’s Perceptions of You
When you meet someone for the first time, they immediately form an opinion of you based on that first encounter. The Virginia Commonwealth University study proved that people associate popularity and leadership skills with how straight someone’s teeth are.
Invisalign asked Kelton Research to run an additional study. This study found that two out of three people remember someone with attractive features, including a smile, more than someone with less attractive features. Other findings in this study:
- 73 percent of those polled feel people with a good smile are more trustworthy.
- 58 percent said people with straight teeth are more likely to be successful.
- 58 percent felt that people with straight teeth are more likely to be rich.
- 57 percent felt that people with straight teeth are more likely to find love.
- 57 percent said they would rather have bad skin than a bad smile.
- 47 percent felt that people with straight teeth are healthier.
- 38 percent felt that people with crooked teeth have a “dull social life.”
Even if others haven’t noticed your teeth, you may have issues with self-esteem because of issues with your teeth. The Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons found that gum disease in senior citizens usually went hand in hand with memory problems. They also found that poor dental hygiene can trigger self-esteem issues in people. People with crooked teeth or gum disease are less likely to want to go into public situations and often avoid smiling when they are with others.
Other studies have found that the poor self-esteem stemming from a bad smile causes a chain reaction. People hate how they look, so they stop or lessen the effort it takes to maintain a good smile. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, there are two key reasons why those with poor self-esteem avoid a dentist. Cost is an important factor, especially when dental insurance doesn’t cover the required dental procedures. There are also people who are so embarrassed by their teeth or smile that they fear going to the dentist and hearing the dentist say how bad their teeth look. The fear keeps them from seeing a dentist, and the lack of proper care does nothing to improve oral health. It becomes a vicious cycle.
Don’t let fears of affording dental care keep you from achieving a beautiful smile. Gallardo & Lamas Periodontics and Implant Dentistry offers a full list of financing options that can help you get the smile you want with a financial plan that fits your lifestyle. Learn more about financing your dental care. Also know that dentists want to help you regain your confidence by helping you achieve the perfect smile.
When you’re ready to see a Miami dental specialist to get that perfect smile, schedule an appointment with Dr. Gallardo & Lamas. You can reach his office at (305) 447-1447 or by completing the free consultation request form.