One of the factors behind the growth of cosmetic dentistry is its visibility in the media, and the influence of celebrity culture. But is this a good or bad thing?
We are living in a celebrity-driven popular culture. This is often a starting-point for criticism of the culture itself, the celebrities, and their impressionable audiences.
The very term celebrity now is broad enough to encompass even the more minor reality TV participants. However, it may be the very ordinariness of these people that makes their audience and followers identify with them.
If how these modern day celebrities look influences how the rest of us think about our teeth, shouldn’t this be viewed as a positive development?
The Celebrity Smile
Decades ago, not everyone in the public eye had perfect teeth. In fact, some in the media spotlight had teeth that were conspicuously imperfect.
On example is David Bowie in the 1970s.
In his later years, however, Bowie ended up with a well-aligned, gleaming set of teeth he could display in front of the world’s media.
This reflects not only the importance of image (something Bowie was always well advanced in understanding), but also advances in cosmetic dental treatment.
The celebrities who have changed their smiles are numerous and notable, from Mike Tyson to Catherine Zeta Jones, Miley Cyrus to Cher Lloyd.
These changes eventually filter down, and they touch on the concerns and aspirations of regular people.
There is a sense here of changing values about the appearance and the health of our teeth.
The Love Island Effect
This is where the impact of the modern, reality-tv celebrity plays an important part.
David Bowie may have seemed very, different from the rest of us, but Love Island’s Jack Fincham was a stationery salesman from Essex.
And he had a perfect smile.
What more and more patients are discovering is that this is something they too can realistically achieve.
But are there benefits to cosmetic dental treatments beyond simply improving our looks?
Cosmetic Dentistry and Quality of Life
Research published in the journal Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology indicates that losing teeth in old age has a clear impact on quality of life, and that the age range of 30 to 49 is the most anxious about the health of its teeth.
Health and wellbeing has a strong psychological element, and young adults are more likely to think their teeth are unhealthy because they see the high standards in the celebrity world for how teeth appear.
But this also implies that choosing cosmetic dentistry can help boost people’s self-esteem and self-confidence.
It is then a question of them having realistic expectations of outcomes, which is something modern dental technology can support.
Advanced digital imaging equipment provides dentists with valuable tools for dentists to demonstrate projected outcomes to patients, and to offer complete clarity about cosmetic dental treatments.
Ultimately, cosmetic dentistry goes deeper than appearance, because it is a reflection of overall dental health and cultural attitudes to it.
For this reason, the celebrity smile is good for promoting a positive view of dental health, and helping people see that they can choose to make their own changes, with the help and support of a dentist.
“21st century technology is enabling dentists to be more than the guardians of dental health. They can help fulfil people’s desires to look better, and feel better as a result.”
Pete Higson, RPA Dental