What Makes a Smile So Powerful?

Woman smiling

The perfect smile. Everyone wants it, but not everyone has the same idea about what exactly “it” is. For some, it’s that wide gleaming toothy Julia Roberts smile. For others, the less obvious and more subtle “Mona Lisa Smile.” But believe it or not, there is now such a thing as an ideal perfect smile, and it may not be what you were expecting!

Recently scientists at the University of Minnesota have discovered that what makes the ideal smile is not actually a wide toothy grin, but a much narrower smile. In fact, the ideal smile is said to be at an angle of between 13 and 17 degrees and falling at a width of between 55 and 62 percent of the distance between the pupils of the eyes.

As for how much teeth should be showing in the ideal smile, researchers found that tooth visibility depends more on the angle and breadth of the smile than anything else. Photos of people with high, broad, toothy smiles rated lower, as were smiles that only showed small angles and few teeth.

So how can you achieve that perfect smile, especially if yours doesn’t fit the ideal characteristics? Well, for starters, don’t panic just yet. This study isn’t exactly applicable in every situation. In fact, it was conducted at the Minnesota State Fair- and according to the study, participants of the study (802 people ranging in age from 18 to 82) supposedly had consumed “fewer than six alcoholic drinks”.

So, while yes, some of these results may be accurate, they’re based on answers from people who may or may not have been anywhere from a little bit buzzed to maybe even intoxicated.  So, before you start worrying if you’re showing too much teeth, or if the angle of your smile is a bit too high, relax. The most important things you should consider when evaluating your own perfect smile are

  • Are your teeth healthy and in good condition?
  • Are they as clean and white as they can be?
  • Do you have fresh, clean breath?
  • Are your teeth as straight and even as you’d like them?
  • When you smile, are you genuinely happy?

If you can answer yes to these questions, you can feel confident that your smile is beautiful, no matter what any study says. If you have trouble with answering yes to any of the above, don’t despair. Give Dr. George’s office a call and let’s see what we can do to help change your answers to all yes’s and get you the beautiful, healthy smile you deserve. Give our office a call at 724-934-3422 and let’s get started!

Dr. Alexandra S. George

Medically reviewed by Dr. Alexandra S. George - D.D.S., L.Vl.I.F. on July 20th, 2017