Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa has a subtle, mysterious smile. The odds are that at the time, her front teeth were dismal examples of Renaissance dental care or lack of it. Hence, we have the ‘snap-shot’ of her hidden -from -view teeth and her inscrutable smile.
Images of smiling with a full frontal display of teeth are a relatively recent historical phenomenon. We would all like to have attractive, flattering smiles. A disarming smile reveals one’s beauty. The attributes of an attractive smile varies from culture to culture, but there are common features which we all recognize and value.
Our culture, rightly or wrongly, place a premium on attractiveness and physical appearance. There are good evolutionary reasons for this, but with the advent of photography and broadcasting it is all pervasive. Thus, yards sticks for comparison abound.
Brighter, whiter, healthy looking teeth are an easy way to enhance one’s appearance. The benefits to a first impression of an attractive smile are incalculable. Happily, the whitening of teeth is a simple and affordable process today.
Teeth age faster than the rest of us do and as they do so, the pulp chamber shrinks. This makes them look darker. The dental aging process is accelerated by trauma, decay and fillings. Teeth stain from our daily habits (smoking, tea, coffee, etc.) and some are discoloured by some medications and other chemicals.
If the lips are the frame, the teeth the picture, then the gums are the matting around the picture. If they are inflamed and diseased, then the picture looks poor. To improve the colour of the teeth healthy gums are a must!
Whitening may be done using over the counter products, take home dental office monitored systems or in office systems that may or may not be light activated. A dental examination is an important first step to rule out teeth or soft tissue problems that could be made worse by whitening. “No pain, no gain” does not apply in this case.
Teeth whitening could be everyone’s first steps to a rejuvenating smile makeover.