Are There Real Benefits to Cosmetic Dentistry?

phoenix_cosmetic_dentistAnytime the word “cosmetic” comes up, it’s easy to think of self-absorbed people (yes, men and women can both be self-absorbed) preening in front of a mirror. In the case of cosmetic dentistry, that image would be a mistake. Cosmetic Dentistry has as much to do with health as looks.

“Straight teeth are easier to clean and keep healthy,” says Dr. Carol Ford from her Phoenix Cosmetic Dentistry office. “And healthy teeth are the real reason for cosmetic dentistry. Of course healthy, well-aligned teeth look better than chipped and overlapping teeth, but straight and healthy teeth are better for your general health, too,” explains Dr. Ford.

While a big smile shows off your teeth and lifts your mood, straight teeth and well-cared for gums are an important part of your general health. They help you chew your food more thoroughly, ward of mouth diseases more easily, and start the digestive process in the right way. That’s a whole body’s worth of benefit from a set of teeth that have been cosmetically treated.

“There is another reality to cosmetic work,” says Dr. Ford. “We’re in a competitive hiring environment, where there are many people who are equally qualified for jobs,” she adds. An article in the Wall Street Journal confirms that good-looking people get hired faster and make more money than their plainer counterparts. Daniel Hamermesh, an economics professor at the University of Texas (Austin) has done research showing that attractive people earn three to four percent more over a lifetime than someone with below-average looks. In his book, Beauty Pays: Why Attractive People are More Successful, Hamermesh says that this is even more true for men than for women.  According to Hamermesh’s research, over a lifetime, an attractive person will earn $230,000 more than a below average looking person.

“Certainly I am more interested in keeping people healthy,” says Dr. Ford, “but if there is an added benefit in presenting yourself with confidence and feeling better because you look better, it’s an added benefit I’ll be happy to create.”

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