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New Year, New Smile: 10 Resolutions for This Year

Año Nuevo, Sonrisa Nueva

Dr. Andreas

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Q.F. Nayibe Cubillos Morales

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Dr. Gustavo Assatourians D.D.S

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New Year, New Smile: Cosmetic dentistry and self-confidence

A smile is much more than just a facial expression; It is a powerful tool with the ability to transform not only our appearance, but also our emotions, our relationships, and, ultimately, our lives. Since time immemorial, the smile has been a key element in human communication, capable of transmitting happiness, trust, and warmth, but its impact goes beyond the purely emotional.

 

The Emotional and Aesthetic Influence of the Smile

new smile

It’s no secret that a genuine smile can brighten a person’s face, making them appear more friendly, approachable, and attractive. But did you know that it can also significantly influence how we perceive ourselves and others perceive us? The aesthetics of a smile not only play a crucial role in social interactions, but they can also be a determining factor in self-esteem and confidence.

 

Smile and Social Perception

Studies have shown that smiling has a profound impact on social perception, affecting how we are seen by others. A sincere, open smile can make us appear more trustworthy, competent, and attractive. This has implications in our personal lives and in the professional field, where the first impression can be decisive.

Studies on Smile and Attraction

Research has linked a pleasant smile with better oral health and the perception of beauty.  When meeting someone, almost half of people notice a smile involuntarily. This underscores the importance of taking care of our smile, not only for health reasons but also for its impact on how others perceive our moods and demeanor.

The Smile as a Tool for Personal and Professional Success

In addition to its influence on social perception, a smile can be a powerful tool in achieving our goals and purposes. The confidence that an attractive smile gives us directly influences our ability to face challenges and interact with the world around us. In a professional environment, a convincing smile can be the differentiator that leads to success.

The Impact of an Aesthetically Pleasing Smile

The Impact of an Aesthetically-Pleasing Smile

In today’s era, where personal image plays a crucial role in many areas of daily life, the search for the perfect smile has become a priority for many. The aesthetics of a smile not only affect how we feel about ourselves but also how we interact with others. Specialized clinics offer guidance and cosmetic dentistry services to obtain or improve that desired smile.

 

The Importance of Oral Health

Beyond aesthetics, oral health is essential to have a beautiful smile. A healthy mouth is synonymous with an attractive smile, and vice versa. Preventing and treating dental problems is not only essential to our overall health, but they also play a crucial role in how we perceive ourselves and how others perceive us.

Comprehensive well-being begins with optimal oral health, entailing an accurate diagnosis of any health problem the patient may present. Among them,  the detection of cavities and, especially the condition of the gums – the pillars of a healthy mouth – is crucial. Bacterial eradication is achieved by eliminating cavities through fillings or composite reconstructions and porcelain inlays in cases of a significant loss of dental tissue.

Additionally, gum health is improved with periodontal treatments, which range from basic oral cleaning to more complex procedures such as full-mouth scaling and root planing. However, a critical aspect of care is to educate the patient on oral hygiene techniques and promote healthy dental habits, which are essential for maintaining a healthy mouth in the long term.

Likewise, it is vital to ensure the correct functioning of the mouth, which must be maintained in a state of harmony. This involves verifying the absence of teeth, the need to extract diseased teeth, and the condition of the hard tissues that support the teeth, such as bone. In addition, the natural movements of the mouth and the pressures exerted will be analyzed to identify any wear due to an organic malfunction. An accurate diagnosis is key to solving these aspects effectively.

 

What is Aesthetic Dentistry?

What is aesthetic dentistry?

Aesthetic dentistry, also known as cosmetic dentistry, represents a specialized branch of dentistry that focuses on improving the aesthetics and appearance of a patient’s smile, teeth, and mouth. Its main objective is to preserve the natural beauty of the teeth, achieving a more attractive and harmonious smile through simple, painless, and quick-to-execute treatments.

The specialty combines advanced dental surgery techniques, cutting-edge technology, and high-quality restorative materials to induce significant transformations not only on a physical level but also psychologically and emotionally in patients. Cosmetic dentistry is dedicated to improving visual appearance and maintaining a firm commitment to oral health, ensuring that each procedure contributes to the overall well-being of the mouth and teeth.

 

How can you Achieve it? 10 Resolutions for this New Year  to have a Radiant Smile

You have a whole year to transform your smile, although the results may be noticeable in a matter of days, depending on the treatment your dentist suggests. There are multiple strategies to carry out this renewal which, without a doubt, will also mark a significant change in your life.

1. Give your smile teeth whitening: With the passage of time or the consumption of certain foods, the teeth can lose their whiteness. Restoring their natural tone or lightening them several degrees is a quick and simple process. Treatments now offer almost instant results and you can even apply them at home, always under the guidance and supervision of a specialist.

2.  Aligned teeth: Genetics rarely gifts us with perfectly aligned teeth and a correct bite, crucial for both aesthetics and general health. Starting pending orthodontic treatment is one of the most valuable resolutions for the new year. Currently, options range from traditional braces to invisible aligners, which are much more aesthetic.

3. Corrects small dental imperfections: Often, minor adjustments can radically transform a smile. If you have uneven, separated teeth, small fractures, or tooth wear, consult your dentist about dental veneers. In just two sessions, without discomfort, you can get the smile you have always wanted.

4. Eliminate the habit of grinding your teeth: Bruxism or teeth grinding, is generally an involuntary act – often derived from stress – that causes dental wear. It can affect the jaw and cause pain in the upper part of the body. Although you may not know this habit, those around you may notice it. The solution may be as simple as using a relief splint.

5.  Renew your smile with implants: The absence of one or more teeth affects the aesthetics and functionality of your smile. If you want to enjoy an unrestricted diet and show your smile without reservation, this new year offers the opportunity to achieve this goal with dental implants. Current treatments are minimally invasive and can be completed in one session, offering long-lasting, natural results. It is now possible to place full arches with just four implants, making the process of smiling easier.

6. Restores an affected tooth: Tooth decay is one of the main enemies of a healthy smile. The ideal solution is to prevent it with adequate oral hygiene. Once present, it is crucial to treat it as soon as possible. Conservative treatments seek to save the affected tooth, with the support of dental caps and crowns.

7.  Adopt a healthy diet for your teeth: Diet plays a fundamental role in dental health, so adjusting your diet can be an excellent New Year’s resolution. Consider reducing your consumption of sugars and carbohydrates and increasing your intake of foods that are beneficial for your teeth, such as fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and sources rich in omega 3 and 6.

8. Avoid harmful habits: Beyond bruxism, other unconscious habits can harm your oral health. To take care of your smile, it is vital to abandon practices such as biting your nails or using your teeth as tools, as well as the habit of distractedly biting objects.

9. Prioritize oral hygiene: Maintaining a dental hygiene routine is key to preventing problems. A beautiful smile is synonymous with health. The best strategy to renew your smile involves daily brushing and flossing. Dental plaque not only causes cavities but also gum inflammation and periodontal disease, making hygiene an essential purpose.

10. Schedule regular dental visits: Your dentist is the perfect ally to achieve and maintain an ideal smile, contributing to your physical and emotional well-being. Commit to attending recommended dental checkups, the best way to ensure a radiant smile.

 

Some Aesthetic Dentistry Treatments

Some aesthetic dentistry treatments

Cosmetic dentistry encompasses a wide range of treatments designed to improve both aesthetics and oral health. These treatments include:

Oral hygiene treatments: Essential to prevent dental and gum diseases, and maintaining a healthy mouth.

Enamel microabrasion: An effective method to eliminate white spots or pigmentation caused by demineralization, restoring the natural appearance of the tooth.

Dental aesthetic contouring: This procedure adjusts the shape of the enamel in specific areas to achieve a more harmonious appearance.

Teeth whitening: It provides a white and uniform tone to your teeth, rejuvenating your smile without altering the tooth structure, the color of porcelain restorations, or previous fillings.

Restorative treatments with composite or porcelain veneers, or zirconia crowns: Ideal for correcting teeth with incorrect position, partial breaks, uneven coloration or to close spaces between teeth (diastemas).

Orthodontics: This treatment aligns the teeth in their optimal position, improving both dental aesthetics and solving functional problems.

Each of these procedures is focused on beautifying the smile while preserving or improving the patient’s oral health.

 

Conclusion

The smile is, without a doubt, one of the most valuable gifts we possess. Its power to transform our lives, both internally and externally, is immense. By taking care of our smile, we not only improve our appearance and health but also enrich our social and emotional lives.

Dental aesthetic specialists play a crucial role in the process, helping us achieve the smile we have dreamed of. The perfect smile is, ultimately, a collaboration between the patient and their dentist, a journey that transforms not only a smile but an entire life.

Frequently Asked Questions

Confidence in dentistry is essential; research has proven that an increase in professional confidence directly influences the quality of a clinical practice. This is reflected in a significant improvement in communication with patients, a greater willingness to undertake more complex procedures, an increase in job satisfaction and, finally, in professional advancement in the arena of cosmetic dentistry.

Cosmetic dentistry is the branch of dentistry that focuses on improving the appearance of your smile. Common cosmetic dental treatments include teeth whitening, dental fillings, and veneers.

Dental problems have a profound effect on psychosocial behavior. Your smile emits positive vibes that can make the people around you feel  at ease; and if you have healthy teeth, your smile reflects self-confidence. Maintaining good dental health is key to enjoying a full and happy life.

Aesthetic dentistry pursues the goal of achieving beauty that is both admired (from an objective point of view) and appreciated (subjectively),  achieved through the active involvement of the patient in the decision process and  skill in technical application.

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References

1. Afroz, S., Rathi, S., Rajput, G., & Rahman, S. A. (2013). Dental esthetics and its impact on psycho-social well-being and dental self confidence: a campus based survey of north Indian university students. Journal of Indian Prosthodontic Society, 13(4), 455–460. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13191-012-0247-1

2. Cleveland Clinic. (Jul, 2022). Cosmetic Dentistry. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/23914-cosmetic-dentistry

3. Nash D. A. (1988). Professional ethics and esthetic dentistry. Journal of the American Dental Association (1939), 117(4), 7E–9E. https://doi.org/10.14219/jada.archive.1988.0040

4. Davenport Tammy, Khoo Edmund DDS. (Feb, 2024). 7 Types of Cosmetic Dentistry Procedures. VerywellHealth. https://www.verywellhealth.com/different-types-of-cosmetic-dental-procedures-1059022

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