“Thank you so much—I can now smile again.”

Different people with different smile

Hearing these words from a cosmetic dentistry patient fills my team with satisfaction and confidence; it makes us all smile, and it reminds us why we do what we do.

In some cases, the patient will have completed what we consider to be a simple treatment—perhaps some home whitening only, or teamed with some contouring and direct bonding.

Or it could be more complex orthodontic, restorative or tooth replacement work, with a large investment in time for both dentist and patient. Whatever the treatment, the patients have felt the work has made sufficient impact on their well-being that they are now no longer embarrassed to smile.

How can we aim to achieve this emotionally successful result with our patients?

Yes, we need to provide the highest-quality dentistry, utilising the wealth of technology and material available to us to maximise the aesthetic results, while minimising the biological cost. Yes, we need to offer patients an unrivalled customer service experience. But most of all, we need to address their main concern.

Creating a beautiful smile is as emotional as it is technical and, often, the pursuit of cosmetic dentistry is driven by how an existing smile is making someone feel.

The American Dental Association in 2014 stated that a great smile was the only feature cited as “very important” by those surveyed on attractiveness. A similar survey by Match.com of 5,481 unmarried individuals found that most singles judge their date on three factors: teeth, grammar and confidence.

How can we treatment plan for aesthetic success?

The use of simple digital photos will aid this process. The basic smile design principles can be explained to patients manually or using photo-editing software on either a screen or a printed image. This dialogue with visual aids can help us identify exactly how we can help patients achieve their goals for their smiles.

Read the full article here: https://www.dentaltown.com/magazine/article/6525/the-power-of-smile-design