How our teeth and oral health can affect both confidence and climbing the social ladder
The appearance of our teeth has been known to affect confidence and mental health, as well as linking us to our social status. According to a study published in the Journal of Dental Research and reported in an article in The Independent newspaper, on average by the time they reach their seventies the poorest people have eight fewer teeth than those who have a higher income. The research also indicates that individuals, who are considered to be in a lower educational class and those with less disposable income, are more likely to suffer from tooth decay, gum disease and have fewer teeth overall.
Malcolm Gladwell, writer and social scientist is reported in a recent Times newspaper article as saying, “There is an inherent link between the quality of our teeth and how we will progress in life.” The Times piece goes on to predict, “As race and gender inequality slowly decline, it is obesity and bad teeth that will define status and hamper upward mobility.”
How bad teeth have an impact on confidence
When linking the appearance of our teeth to body confidence, it’s likely a person who is unhappy with their oral health will hide their smile or try to prevent their teeth from being seen, ultimately having an effect on self-esteem.
The increase in use of social media and the importance placed by many on matching a desired celebrity image will have an impact on our overall confidence. There has been a significant rise in requests for individuals seeking cosmetic dental surgery to improve their smile in the hope of achieving that perfect look. Often, procedures like whitening, veneers and even braces can solve many problems and increase self-esteem, but if these go wrong, people can be left worse off.
Having bad teeth can cause people to lose confidence in their appearance and lead to depression. A Survey by VisionCritical reported in the Daily Mail has shown that people see whiter teeth as an indication of social status and wealth, with many often turning to cosmetic dental surgery for help.
The importance of dental check-ups
In order to maintain a high level of oral health, it’s important that you attend regular visits with your dentist. Any potential problems can be picked up sooner rather than later and in most cases, your dentist will be able to offer professional advice.
Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case and if you are lacking in confidence due to a problem caused by your dentist you should talk to an adviser at the Dental Law Partnership or alternatively, read our dental advice section.