It has been said that the first thing you learn is hardest to unlearn. Researchers call it the primacy effect, meaning that the first experience governs everything that follows that. When meeting new people, this first impression truly counts! What if there was a simple way to make you feel better about yourself? What if there was a simple way to improve your business success? Wouldn’t it be amazing if there was something you could do that would improve your relationship with your friends and family? The reality is the research has clearly shown that what you think about your smile guides what you think about you. If you are happier about your appearance, you are happier across the board! People actually see you as more successful, happier, funnier, and more attractive if you have a smile that you love. It seems like a little thing, but the reality is your smile tells the world not only who you are, but also what you think about yourself!
What we see…
Obviously, when you smile, you smile with more than just your teeth. In fact, the number of different kinds of smiles is the subject of debate and discussion. One of the most important researchers into smiles has demonstrated that we can see more than 50 different kinds of smiles! The reality is that your smile is always telling a story about you. From whether it is there to how much of your face is engaged in your smile, what people interpret from your smile defines how they see you. The question really comes down to how you want to portray yourself!
Our first impression of people tends to remain how we see them until proven otherwise. So it is important to know what goes into that first impression. Studies have shown that their hair accounts for only 4% of what we notice. The clothes they wear make up another 7% of that impression. We invest an ton of time in making sure that our hair and clothes are just the way we want. We do this to be seen as the person we want to be. The crazy thing is together, they only make up 11% of how we are seen. That kind of makes you think twice about how long you spend curling your hair and how many outfits you try on before you go out, doesn’t it? In fact, how we smell is equally important to the combined impact of your clothes and hair, accounting for another 11% of what people see when they meet you. The eyes make up another 31% of that first impression, and your smile itself accounts for a whopping 47% of what people first notice!
Obviously, it still makes sense to wear the clothes you feel good in and to wear your hair how you want it. That feeds into who you are. But, the biggest impact you can have on how you feel and how the world feels about you is having a smile you love! Studies have also shown that having teeth you love brightens up the smile in your eyes and opens your whole face!
What can we do?
There are some pretty simple things you can do to improve your first impression on people. Some of the obvious things are don’t smell bad, wear clean clothes, and brush your hair! However, all together that is still only about a quarter of what people see in you. The place with real power is going to be your smile. In fact, if your gum tissue is healthy because you work together with your hygienist regularly, you can even improve the smell part! If the gum tissue is healthy, then the next area to focus on would be the teeth and lips themselves. Interestingly, having your teeth aligned correctly and your bite stable is what provides the support your lips need to be a natural and beautiful frame around your teeth!
Easily the simplest and often, one of the most dramatic things you can do to improve your smile is simply to brighten your teeth. They are supposed to be a light color and often even a bright white. In fact, bright white teeth make people look both younger and healthier! There are a lot of home remedies and over the counter approaches to whitening your teeth, but the most powerful and effective are still the professional whitening systems.
There are two in particular that are class leaders that you may want to consider. Zoom! Whitening is a light-enhances power whitening system that you can use in as little as two hours and often see teeth up to 8 shades brighter when you are done! At Aesthetic Dentistry of Georgetown, we will also provide touch-up trays for you to continue to brighten or to simply maintain your brighter smile after you are finished! The other system is KöR Whitening, and this one will even see the darker colors like the grays and blues of tetracycline staining brighten as a result. We also see very little sensitivity with these systems and routinely see impressive results! Call today and see if one of these may make a difference for you!
There are a lot of options today for getting your teeth straighter. The age-old metal braces are predictable, but they sure aren’t the only great option. Invisalign has been the market leader and leading the advance of rapid and controlled alignment of teeth. This approach will correct almost all misalignments and accomplishes it with carefully controlled step by step movements that can be dialed in to individual teeth. This gives us incredible comfort as well as the opportunity to align teeth even when there are challenges like dental implants or bridges to work around.
The average Invisalign case has the teeth in a better position in as little as 9 months, and often a lot faster than that. The key is to determine what your goals are and develop the plan to achieve them. With teeth straighter, they are chip less and there is less sensitivity from the bite. In terms of your smile, they also seem brighter when they are lined up correctly and support the lips that are wrapped around them better. The end result is healthier and more stable teeth and gums and a prettier smile, and it is only a few months away!
For some cases, there is a lot of wear or a bite issue that complicates the impact of simpler approaches. Maybe your teeth aren’t the right shape to begin with, or they are chipped from trauma. With the amazing bonding materials and beautiful porcelain we have at our disposal today, even in broken and worn down smiles, the smile of your dream may be just a few appointments away! Using facial cues like the width of your eyes and mouth, we can create a smile that matches your face. The size and shape of your new teeth can be individually crafted to create just the smile you are looking for!
If you are interested in a smile makeover, give us a call and set up a free consultation where we can discuss your options. Almost anything can be accomplished today and it is incredible to see the change in people when they have the smile that truly fits them!