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Febrary 22, 2007, Boca Raton and Fort Lauderdale, Florida – Is perception truly reality? A consumer study recently released by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD) reveals a wide majority of people judge us by the beauty of our smile.

Boca Raton Smile MakeoverNot only do Americans perceive those with pearly white teeth as more attractive, but they are perceived as more interesting, intelligent, successful and wealthy. That’s a lot of reality.

The independent study was conducted by Dr. Anne Beall, a social psychologist and market research professional from Beall Research and Training. Participants viewed before-and-after photos of eight individuals and were asked to make snap judgments on the basis of 10 characteristics. Additional characteristics included happiness, friendliness, kindness, sensitivity and how interesting the subjects appeared.

The 528 participants were evenly divided between men and women, with half viewing the first set and the second half viewing the second set. Two of the photos were of people with mildly improved smiles; two had moderate improvements; and four had undergone major makeovers.

Respondents were not told they were to judge the photos on the bases of their smiles, but rather on the overall appearance. The scale ran from one to 10, with one representing “not at all attractive” and 10 as “extremely attractive.”

“Based on a lot of interaction with happy patients, we were expecting this type of difference in attractiveness and popularity with the opposite sex,” said AACD President Dr. Marty Zase in a press release. “(B)ut to have (the largest) gains in how successful, intelligent, interesting and wealthy patients appeared after cosmetic dentistry caught even us by surprise. We’ve been telling people that a beautiful smile was a great investment in their futures. Now we have independent evidence.”

The study revealed the following increases in perception after a smile makeover:

  • Attractive = 130% increase
  • Popular With the Opposite Sex = 120% increase
  • Wealthy = 100% increase
  • Successful in Their Career = 90% increase
  • Interesting = 70% increase
  • Intelligent = 60% increase
  • Friendly = 50% increase
  • Sensitive to Other People = 50% increase
  • Kind = 40% increase
  • Happy = 50% increase

Other studies have shown people make quick decisions about people in the first 10 seconds of meeting them, reinforcing the results of the AACD study. Thanks to modern cosmetic dentistry, it’s much easier to change this perception, and thus reality.


Call South Florida Cosmetic Dentistry today or email us to schedule an appointment and learn more about cosmetic dentistry, including smile extreme makeovers, porcelain veneers, and tooth whitening.