When it comes to any facet of modern life — professional, social, romantic, etc. — your image says a lot about who you are and what you value. For better or for worse, the 21st Century is turning out to be a very visual time, and one where looking your best matters a lot. This is true for even the smallest features, such as your smile.
But improving your smile can not only be hard work, it can also lead to your image suffering a hit. So what if it didn't have to? If you're looking for a few image-conscious ways to improve your smile, then here's what you need to know.
Sure, you can try to whiten your teeth using charcoal scrubs, whitening strips, or even whitening toothpaste, but all of that takes time — like, weeks if not months — and you want to have a brighter, whiter smile as soon as possible, right?
For white teeth more quickly than drugstore products, it's best to go to your dentist and get whitening trays. These trays are shaped to your teeth for the most customized whitening ever, for around $400 dollars (or, if you opt for the slightly faster in-office whitening procedures, around $650), and are a sure way to say goodbye to yellowish choppers.
Having your teeth misaligned can be a source of frustration and even embarrassment for some people, especially if the misalignment is obvious or in your front teeth (rather than your mostly invisible molars). Luckily, clear braces are an advancement in dental technology to keep you looking fabulous even while your teeth are being corrected.
While clear braces are more expensive than their metal cousins, it's well worth the slightly higher sticker price to be able to smile comfortably while your bite and teeth alignment are being corrected. So long as you keep them clean and brush them after anything that can stain them (including red wine!), these invisible bands will give you a great, professional smile without any of the "metal mouth" nicknames.
If you're a grown adult, going around with a retainer in your teeth is the best way not to get taken seriously. After all, retainers are for middle school kids, not adults — at least, that's what people think. Luckily, there's a way to keep your teeth from shifting in image-damaging ways without resorting to a metal band across your mouth in every photo.
Retainers worn at night help to keep your smile perfectly straight and protected from dangerous nighttime clenching and grinding (which can wear away at your teeth) without giving anyone else a clue that you're depending on anything for dental assistance. After your dentist takes a cast of your mouth, they can personalize your retainer so that it fits perfectly — so you can even use your sleeping time to improve your smile.