LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – You only have once chance to make a first impression. Do you what your smile is saying about you?
The American Academy of Periodontology surveyed 253 people about first impressions and smiles. The information posted on the organization’s website reported that half of them considered the smile the first facial feature that people notice, and 80 percent of those who participated in the study indicated that they were unhappy with their smile.
“Your smile can be the most significant aspect of a first impression,” says Dr. David Alpan a Las Vegas pediatric orthodontist. “It carries a type of social importance, but it may have an economic one as well, in terms of getting that job.”
Making a good first impression on a job interview is essential during tough economic times when there are a flood of candidates for each of the few jobs available.
According to Dr. Alpan, of Aesthetic Orthodontics, a pleasant and healthy smile is important in terms of how others, such as a potential employer, will perceive and interact with them. Appearances are also an extremely important factor in determining people’s self-images.
“Having an unhealthy or negative view of oneself can adversely affect self-confidence and therefore how you present yourself to others,” says Dr. Alpan, a TMD dentist. “Poor self-confidence can play against you in a job interview and in other areas of your life.”
While it is true that certain people may be turned off by unattractive teeth, the opposite is also true: an attractive smile can improve your appearance and increase your confidence. This provides a boost for career and personal opportunities.
“Advancements in orthodontic technology have made it possible for adults to improve their teeth without having to wear traditional metal braces,” says Dr. Alpan, who offers invisible orthodontics like Invisalign, Incognito braces and the Damon system braces.
Invisalign typically requires fewer orthodontic checkups, making treatment less of an imposition on your time and schedule. Another benefit is that the clear, plastic aligners are removable for those important occasions, such as a job interview or date.
Some people may question the rationale of taking on the expense of orthodontic treatment, which is sometimes viewed as purely cosmetic procedure. However, Dr. Alpan points out that orthodontic treatment is much more than cosmetic improvement.
Properly aligned teeth promote good oral health by alleviating crowded areas where food can get caught and allow plaque to build up. Teeth in proper alignment tend to be easier to brush and floss, which promotes healthy teeth and gums.
As for the expense of orthodontic treatment, many orthodontists have discounts for payment upfront and different types of payment plans, some of which offer interest-free financing.
“It’s important to note that even though we’re talking about making a positive first impression, the benefits of orthodontic treatment extend far beyond having an attractive smile,” Dr. Alpan says.
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