Apparently, selfies are making many people run to the dentist with concerns about their teeth. While some of these concerns are real, such as discolored teeth, cavities, and crooked teeth, many people are being made to think their teeth are too big because of the distorting perspective of their smartphones.

Group of young people photographing themselves with a smart phone. You can't trust a selfie to show how your teeth really look.

Seeing Yourself in Selfies More Than Mirrors

Before the advent of smartphones, most people saw themselves in mirrors. Now, we may not always like what the mirror shows us, but it does have the advantage of being a fairly faithful representation. A mirror is large enough and flat plane, so it’s capable of representing you back to you in a true perspective: you’ll see yourself in the same proportions.

But now people are seeing themselves in their phones more than in mirrors.The average woman age 16-25 takes three selfies a day–if you count the final versions, because they take an average of seven shots for each selfie they post. That’s 21 separate instances of evaluating their appearance in their smartphone each day! That’s probably more than anyone but Narcissus looks in the mirror!

And when you add in the fact that many people now use their smartphone as their mirror, they probably come to think of themselves as the smartphone sees them, and that’s a problem.

Unlike a mirror, a smartphone camera is too small to have a true perspective on your face. It tries to make up for the fact that it’s only a couple of millimeters across with a sophisticated lens Most of the time, this works, but when the phone gets too close, it starts to distort the image, and can make things in the center of the image look larger than they are.

Ask the Dentist

Because of this distortion, many people are becoming concerned that their central teeth are too large, and coming in to request changes. First, it’s important to understand that it’s normal for your central incisors to be larger than your lateral incisors by a significant proportion, and that includes being both wider and longer. Before you get too concerned, take time checking them out in a flat mirror to see how they look then.

If you still have concerns, it’s best to schedule an appointment with a cosmetic dentist who can help you understand whether your teeth really are large, or if it’s just a trick of the lens. Large teeth are harder to deal with than small teeth, but cosmetic dentistry has many techniques to help you achieve an attractive smile.

To talk to a cosmetic dentist in Las Vegas about your smile, please call (702) 873-0324 for an appointment at the office of Dr. James B. Polley.