Selfie Treachery Leads to Uptick in Visits to UK Dentists



UK dentists are reporting a substantial increase in the number of people who take selfies, then seek treatment for what they wrongly believe are misshapen (“horsey”) teeth. The dentists say the people want a reduction in the natural dominance of their front 2 teeth, not realizing that their mobile phones are actually creating a distorted photo.

“The problem with a selfie is that the picture is taken quite closely, so the image can be distorted,” said Tim Bradstock-Smith, BDS, clinical director at the London Smile Clinic. “Teeth often look more protruding than they are in real life and appear ‘horse-like,’ which can also be emphasized by the unflattering light of the flash.”

Commenting further, Dr. Bradstock-Smith said, “It’s always been thought that the 2 front teeth look good being a little more dominant, with a step in length between these and the next 2. It creates a ‘smile curve,” and it’s a highly aesthetic, natural, youthful appearance. However, if your selfies are taken too closely, they can be distorted and exaggerate the size of the 2 front teeth.”

Dr. Bradstock-Smith said selfies have become a popular way for women to appraise their looks, especially since many of them now use the cameras on their mobile devices in lieu of compact mirrors to apply makeup. He said he has to dissuade several patients a week from having unnecessary cosmetic dental treatment.

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