The Square Smile: Cosmetic Dentistry
From being the world centre for terrible teeth, London is developing a worldwide reputation for being the new home of the winning smile. We caught up with Dr Mark Hughes of the Harley Street Dental Group to find out more about how he is launching the famous street’s most ambitious cosmetic dental project in decades.
What is Harley Street Dental Group?
The group comprises three top end dental practices, situated in destination locations in London, and in April 2013 we are opening a centre of dental excellence on Harley Street, ranged over six floors of a refurbished Grade II listed building. Inside we have the very latest state of the art technology, coupled with the elegance of a spa.
The Group’s 18 clinicians are among the very best in their profession, and between them provide the most extensive range of specialties available in London.
What is different about the HSDG service?
Our overarching philosophy is to achieve absolute excellence in all aspects of clinical dentistry and facial aesthetics. Our clinicians provide tailored treatments according the condition and lifestyle of each patient, and achieve outstanding results.
We make sure our patients have a pleasant, pain-free experience, with the highest level of service and comfort, and our locations and interiors are second to none in dentistry.
As dental professionals we also have a deep understanding of facial architecture and have also introduced aesthetic facial treatments to complement the work with achieve rejuvenating patient’s mouths.
Has the cosmetic dentistry industry changed in London over the past decade?
Yes, out of all proportion. The development of new dental technologies and materials has meant that we can create natural looking restorations, which rejuvenate the mouth without looking like anything has been ‘done’.
Where once veneers were the most requested treatment, we now prefer dental implants, adult orthodontics and tooth whitening, which allow us to preserve and enhance a person’s own teeth.
As for the ‘why?’, London has become a world hub of business excellence, and demands from high net worth individuals to find treatments which help them achieve an even better impression have been tantamount to the success of the Harley Street Dental Group.
Has there been a surge in male patients over recent years, and why is this?
We have seen an exponential increase in male patients in our practices over recent years. We attribute this to a variety of factors, although it is primarily due to an increased pressure to impress in the working world.
To look good and exude confidence is key in a competitive environment, and this can be achieved when a person looks and feels impressive. We are often judged by our appearance and a first impression takes seconds to form. Adopting the right attire, the right haircut and a pristine smile means that a person can convey the right message even before they speak.
What does a great smile say about someone?
Perceptions may not be accurate, but they are powerful. A great smile gives off positive vibes on first meeting. As well as conveying confidence, it shows a warmness of character and willingness to engage. It also says that the person has a strong attention to detail and cares about the impression that they make. A good smile is a very important social and business asset.
What sort of feedback do your patients tell you about after their treatment has been completed?
Patients tell us that they are surprised that they enjoyed the experience of being treated at our practices, and they are even more delighted when they see the results we achieve for them. At the beginning of the process we ask them for their expectations and we find that we match or exceed these in most cases.
Patients report on an improvement in speech, their ability to eat better, enjoy a boost in confidence, and, in many cases, achieve unexpected successes at work or in relationships, which they attribute to their willingness to speak, to engage and to an increase in self-assurance.
Which celebrity smiles are the most requested to emulate?
We live in an increasing celebrity-driven culture, and this has meant a surge in requests for us to emulate the smiles of well-known people. Patients admire the smiles of celebrities such as Cheryl Cole, Kate Middleton, and Halle Berry. Will Smith and Tom Cruise smiles are popular with males.
As a result we have a large number of adult patients undergoing orthodontic treatment – which can now be carried out discretely thanks to the introduction of a range of new methods. We are also renowned for our compete mouth makeovers and probably have more expertise in fitting dental implants than anywhere in London.
Is the cliché of British bad teeth now finally over?
Not entirely, sadly. We still have some areas of dental health which we can improve as a nation.
However, more and more people are recognising the benefits of a healthy straight, white smile, and are seeking the necessary treatments to give them the boost, which really does make a difference to their lives.
You see many more attractive smiles around the UK than you could 10 years ago, but there are many people that are still unaware of what dental professionals like us can do for them.
For more information about the Harley Street Dental Group, visit harleystreetdentalgroup.org.
Image above from Harley Street Dental Group.