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Blog Dr. Alex Llanos

Smile Design. What is it?... and What is it not!

Written by: Ciencia a la Colombiana for Dr. Alex Llanos

A simple smile has great power in our personal relationships and even determines how we interact in society.

Our discipline, aesthetic dentistry, is responsible for creating a pleasing composition in the smile through the arrangement of various aesthetic elements.

A design is not the symmetrical arrangement of perfectly rectangular teeth with a uniform chalky tone; remember that extreme and uniform whiteness is unnatural.

Symmetry and color are important but not the ultimate goal. In fact, with a smile design, we seek to develop a peaceful and stable masticatory system in which not only the teeth but also the muscles, bone structures, and joints, all function in harmony.

Therefore, to achieve a satisfactory result, we take the time to understand the interrelationships between the supporting bone structures and soft tissues such as the gums, palate, and tongue. This way, with your collaboration, we formulate the best treatment.

Design in any discipline is a systematic, creative, and flexible process supported by academic and aesthetic tools in our case, for the creation of a product that meets certain objectives. Well, the aesthetic design of a smile has two components: one of facial composition and the other of dental and soft tissues.

When we analyze the facial component, we evaluate the alignment of facial features and their symmetry. For this reason, aesthetic planning often includes orthodontic treatments, surgeries, and periodontal therapy.

Horizontal and vertical dimensions, as beauty standards, help determine alignment treatments, the appropriate size of teeth, and their morphology.

On the other hand, when analyzing the dental and soft tissue component, we assess the size of the teeth based on theories such as the golden rule of dental proportionality. This, along with an analysis of the soft tissue, i.e., gums, their dimensions, morphology, and coloration, taking into account the patient's perception as well as the artistic perception of the designer and the patient, leads to a successful final formulation of your smile design.

Finally, the color of the teeth, as we discussed in a previous post, includes several aspects in which the designer creates transparency, diffuses, and accentuates the color in different areas to achieve appropriate naturalness. In fact, the color facets depend on the patient's gender, age, and personality.

If the design is focused on functionality and aesthetics, it is the designer's duty to diagnose the best treatment. Do you find the relationship between aesthetics and other dental disciplines such as orthodontics appropriate? Simply aesthetic design? Functional? What treatment do you prefer?

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