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Throughout the first ten years of my career as a cosmetic dentist, I gained valuable insight into what takes a great smile to a truly stunning smile. During the past 20 years of my career as an orthodontic specialist, keeping in mind those lessons learned as a cosmetic dentist, I believe in a simple truism – straightening teeth is easy. A perfect smile, however, results from creating balance between tooth alignment, proportions, smile width and the surrounding soft tissue.
Let’s get one thing out of the way – there is no one “perfect” formula for a perfect smile. Each individual comes with their own set of wants, needs and limitations. By thoroughly analyzing all of the facets we are about to discuss, and having an open dialogue with your orthodontist, you can begin creating the smile you have always wanted. Patients should never settle for less than this from their orthodontist before embarking upon treatment. Complete clarity of the ultimate treatment goals (before treatment) should be the expectation.
Soft tissue drape, lip profile, facial symmetry and amount of gum show when smiling are a few of the starting points when assessing what we want the smile result to be. Debilitating bites resulting in tooth wear, must also be factored into our treatment goals. The significance of back teeth showing on smiling, the symmetric curvature of the smile, the symmetry of the teeth, the brightness/whiteness of the smile and positioning of the teeth, all factor into the overall assessment of how we can reach the ultimate balanced smile and healthy bite.
If an orthodontic specialist has assessed these areas, the one additional piece of information to require is a smile gallery of similar patients and situations. The proof is in the pudding, orthodontists should proudly provide a look at what they can accomplish.
It’s your treatment. Ask the right questions early on and the treatment will progress more smoothly than ever imagined – with no unpleasant surprises!
Dr. Ken Danyluk, or Dr. D as he is affectionately known, practiced as a general dentist for over 7 years before pursuing his specialty training in orthodontics. With the combination of general dentistry experience and specialty certification, he is able to provide his patients with unmatched comprehensive care.
It is important to remember that not all orthodontists offer lingual braces due to the considerable amount of training and technical expertise that is necessary to complete successful cases. Dr. Danyluk not only specializes in lingual braces; he also currently runs the largest lingual practice in all of North America. He also worked with top orthodontists from all over the world as a member of the Alias Lingual Bracket Development Team.