An t i - Ag i ng DENT I STRY
Dr. Kourosh Maddahi
C O S M E T I C & A N T I - A G I N G D E N T I S T R Y
A REVITALIZED SMILE IS REVITALIZED CONFIDENCE Finding Empowerment in a Smile
In my 31 years of practicing dentistry, I’ve noticed one word that often comes up in conversations: Confidence. Technology and treatments continue to improve; but ultimately, the goal remains the same. People want to feel confident and empowered with a revitalized smile. However, over the last 10 years, I’ve noticed a new emerging trend. I’ve had many conversations with patients about the topic of confidence, or more precisely, the lack of it. Patients tell me they hate their smile and dread being photographed. They say they are afraid to smile because they don’t like the look of their teeth. Compounding problems, they feel just as terrible for not smiling. This is damaging to their self- esteem and it erodes their confidence. But why has this become more common over the past 10 years? The answer is social media. People are posting pictures to Facebook, Instagram, and many other social media platforms. They put themselves out there for all the world to see, smiles and all. With our lives on social media, it can be challenging to hide a smile you don’t love. For some people, it becomes a source of anxiety. However, there’s hope. More and more people are realizing they can do something about it. A renewed smile is just around the corner. When a patient mentions to me that they don’t like their smile, I make it a conversation. We talk about the ways we can improve their smile, and I ask them specifically what they dislike about it. Sometimes, it is the color of their teeth — the teeth are stained, yellowed, or discolored. Other times, their concern is crooked or misaligned teeth. Occasionally, a patient doesn’t know exactly what they dislike about their teeth. They simply know that something is off. And no matter the situation, they know they want to correct the issue. From there, we may decide on a teeth-whitening plan or we may go beyond that and opt for veneers. It all depends on the individual’s needs and desires.
Once we take the next step, I start to see the transformation. It’s a transformation in attitude, demeanor, and confidence. As treatment concludes, I often hear how surprised a patient is to see their new smile. They remark that they have never seen themselves this way before. It is truly remarkable. I have had many conversations with patients a year or more after treatment. They tell me the impact their new smile has had on their lives. I hear comments like, “I landed a much better job!” or, “I’ve met so many new people!” They feel more outgoing and look forward to being photographed and being in social situations. They feel empowered. Self-esteem is an important issue, and it’s not always discussed as openly as it should be. It’s unfortunate that many people settle for smiles they don’t love. Nonetheless, I’m happy to be of service to those who desire a revitalized smile and improved confidence.
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