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Smile Design From The Doctor’s Perspective

Smile Design From The Doctor’s Perspective

The “Perfect-Minded” Patient

Patients who fall into the category of the “perfect-minded” will typically expect maximum regularity and alignment along with maximum brightness [Figure 3]. Part of the art of smile enhancement and imparting a natural appearance is to make certain features invisible and other features more visible. This is really where science and art meet in dentistry. Knowing what can and cannot change to create the perception of reality is a very important concept, not only for smile enhancement but for the human body generally. Nobody is completely the same on each side, but if there are significant differences between the right and left sides, they can become noticeable and distracting.

To ensure that a smile looks right it will be critical to provide patients with a smile that is symmetrical. In other words, if you were to draw a vertical line down the middle of the face, which we call the midline, that line would be directly between the front teeth, and around it the smile will look “balanced” from one side to the other. This is also true in a horizontal dimension, creating a regular smile line that matches the curvature of the lower lip. Now each tooth type is made to fit into this framework with symmetrical central incisors, lateral incisors and canines, along with gum lines that also match from one side to the other.