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The importance we place on physical attractiveness

Have you recently found yourself looking in the mirror wondering how others see you? Chances are that you would have zeroed in on your smile; evaluating its brightness and how straight your teeth look. You may also have wondered if you should consult an orthodontist Stoke-on-Trent to finally straighten out that crooked bite or close those frustrating gaps.

If any of these thoughts have come to mind, you are not alone.

More and more of us now concern ourselves with our physical appearance more than ever before, because life in modern society simply demands it of us. Insights gleaned from a YouGov survey make it clear just how much physical attraction matters in UK society. An overwhelming 89 per cent of those polled (male and female) are of the opinion that physical attractiveness does indeed matter.

The argument for this is a strong one. What we think of ourselves and how others see us depends on our physical appearance (of which dental attractiveness is a critical part). Before we can be assessed on personality, we are judged by our looks. Many studies lend voice to the fact judgements made from first impressions can have a far reaching effect on an individual’s life.

Whereas in the past, the influence of our looks played itself out in the subconscious, today, thanks to the exhaustive work of academics and researchers to understand what makes us tick, we find that the role played by physical attractiveness is no longer veiled. We have become very conscious of just how much currency appearance has on how we are treated in the workplace, playground and even in the courtroom. Life is more kind to those who have perfected the art of looking good.

What makes us attractive?

a rack of clothes

More often than not, when determining attractiveness, your first frame of reference draws on the aesthetic – prime physical appearance.  Yes, whilst it is acknowledged that there are many varied determinants that make us attractive to others, physical attractiveness is the most commonly referenced.

Many may differ on which trait – a perfectly proportioned body, personality, sense of humour, intelligence, kindness, generosity – rank as the most important, there is no denying that visual appeal, for the large majority, matters most.

Types of judgements formed based on first impressions

It is surprising how varied the inferences are that we make of others based on how they look. It may only take a second or two, but we derive an awful lot of information from just a glance. Some of these perceptions are accurate, others are not.

Facial clues can be used to judge a person’s leadership potential, how approachable they are, trustworthiness, and even whether you are religious or not.

Physical appearance, especially at the beginning of meeting someone is a critical part of what draws us to them. Depending on whether we like what we see, we will choose to spend more time with that person, improving the odds of proximity, boosting familiarity, and increasing reciprocity – other aspects of attractiveness.

Teeth straightening treatments have been used to remarkable effect to improve dental appearance. Dental experts agree that professional consultation is a prerequisite before a treatment plan can be prescribed. This step should not be skipped as it best protects a patient’s interests as well as dental health.

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