It’s a common misperception about cosmetic dentistry: it’s all about appearance. That’s why some people have a tendency to dismiss cosmetic dentistry as being frivolous or unimportant. But the truth is quite different. Cosmetic dentistry focuses on the appearance of your teeth, but the effects extend far beyond your appearance. People make many social and moral judgments about you on the basis of your smile. Research shows that gummy smiles are considered less attractive than smiles that show more teeth.

Lengthening your front teet

The Impacts of Correcting a Gummy Smile

Scientific studies show how this works. One recent study looked at how correcting a gummy smile impacted judgements about the person. In this study, researchers recruited patients with small teeth who showed a lot of gum tissue. Dentists took their pictures. They then altered the pictures digitally to lengthen the teeth and reduce the amount of gums tissue showing.

Researchers showed subjects a set of pictures that included a mix of original and modified images. Subjects never saw both pictures for the same patient. Subjects rated the attractiveness of the person in the picture. However, they also rated the person on their intelligence, trustworthiness, friendliness, and self-confidence.

Actual River Edge Dental patient!

Subjects rated the modified pictures significantly better than the original pictures, in all categories. People look better with longer front teeth, but they get other benefits, too. People judge them better in other categories of social worth.

The Impact of These Judgments

So, what is the impact of simple cosmetic procedures such as enlarging your front teeth? We can’t guarantee anything beyond a change in appearance. Sometimes, though, changing the appearance of your smile can cause other effects.

For example, people with a more attractive smile are more likely to be hired than people with a less attractive smile, and they’re more likely to be offered a higher starting salary.

People with more attractive smiles are also more likely to be forgiven for social transgressions. You might not think this is such a big deal when it’s on a dating website, but it’s also true for people on a jury, who may be more likely to hand down a severe judgment on someone with an unattractive smile.

It’s called the “halo effect,” and it can make a big difference in your life, even though you might not notice any individual effects.

Remember, your smile is an essential part of your personal brand, and if it’s not working, you need to address the problem.

How Can Your Gummy Smile Be Improved?

If you are unhappy about a gummy smile, we have several approaches that can improve it.

If you really do have excessive gum tissue, we can use laser gum recontouring to make your gums more proportionate to your smile and your face.

On the other hand, if your teeth haven’t fully emerged from your jaw, orthodontics can help them emerge. Braces or other traditional wire-based orthodontics work best for this. Functional orthodontics can also alter the shape of your jaw if necessary to make room for more forward-facing teeth.

Finally, if your teeth are just small, we can build them up using porcelain veneers or dental crowns to ensure your teeth are an attractive length and proportion for your face.

No matter what approach we use, you will love the appearance of your new smile and may be surprised at how differently people respond to you.

If you’re ready to enjoy a bright, beautiful smile for the first time in your life or restore the beautiful smile of your youth, please call 201-343-4044 or email today for an appointment with a River Edge cosmetic dentist at the River Edge Dental Center for General & Cosmetic Dentistry.