Around three quarters (73%) of Brits like or love their smile, according to a new survey from the Oral Health Foundation.
More than half (55%) were ‘highly positive’ about their smile, with 18% displaying an even greater love for it.
The survey also found a strong link between the oral health of respondents and their confidence in their smile, with those considering themselves to have poor oral health also saying they do not like their smile.
‘Many people view good oral health as an important factor in their overall appearance, and in most cases, the health of the mouth can play a significant role in a person’s confidence to smile,’ Dr Nigel Carter OBE, chief executive of the Oral Health Foundation, says.
‘This is most likely because a healthy smile often translates to an attractive smile and this will make a person feel better about themselves.
‘A smile communicates a sign of friendship, trust and acceptability.
‘As these are things most people strive towards, it means that taking good care of the mouth is incredibly important.’
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Oxford smiles at the top
Men are more likely to show off their smile (80%) than women (67%), the survey also shows.
Oxford (86%) is the city where most people are confident of their smile, followed by Birmingham (85%), London (82%) and York (76%).
Aberdeen (53%) is the place people are most likely to negatively see their smile, with Nottingham (43%), Bristol (42%), Coventry (39%) and Leeds (38%) rounding off the top five.
‘Poor gum health, crooked teeth, stained teeth and missing teeth are some of the problems that can prevent people from smiling with confidence,’ Dr Carter continues.
‘Low self-esteem and lack of confidence can cause a person to become withdrawn and depressed as they may feel uncomfortable smiling, talking, eating in public and meeting new people.
‘Emotional problems can cause eating disorders to develop and both bulimia and anorexia can lead to dental problems such as erosion that may need cosmetic dentistry to rectify.
‘The stress that causes people to overeat can also contribute to the neglect of oral care, which can lead to gum disease and tooth decay and the loss of an attractive smile.’