At McDonald Orthodontics

Dr. John always wants you to have the best possible smile you can have.


When people think about orthodontics and great smiles, they mainly think about making crooked teeth straight. In reality, there are many characteristics that contribute to a great smile. From your first visit to your last, Dr. John will evaluate every single one of these characteristics.

Some Dr. John can achieve by himself. Others require the help of your general dentist. Dr. John will discuss these aspects with you throughout treatment to make sure your smile can be the best it can be.

Here are some factors that contribute to how your smile looks

Some parts of orthodontic treatment are best started before all of the permanent teeth have come in. This is generally between the ages of 7 and 10 years old. Most of these treatments are directed at underlying jaw development problems, tooth eruption disturbances, and correcting habits (such as thumb sucking) that, left untreated, allow orthodontic problems to worsen while the child grows.

  1. How your teeth are framed by gum tissue and lips when you smile – A great smile means your gum tissue fills in all spaces between teeth and is not too thin or thick in the areas visible when you smile. Also, how your lips frame your smile by not showing or hiding too much of your teeth. These factors can be modified by choosing the right approach to orthodontic treatment.
  2. How your teeth fit with the rest of your face – If your teeth are straight but too far forward, compared to the rest of your facial features – it can look too big or horsey. Along these same lines, how much your teeth lean or slant out can affect your smile.
  3. Teeth proportionality – Whether you realize it or not, a great smile depends on the right size teeth in the right place. People are quick to notice when proportions are off. In cases like this, balance of proportions should be a factor in orthodontic treatment.
  4. The amount of gum tissue above teeth that shows when you fully smile – When you have just the right amount of gum tissue showing above teeth, your smile will look the best. Too much or not enough visible gum tissue can detract from the quality of your smile.
  5. Shape of teeth – There is an ideal shape and proportionality between the length and width of teeth. Teeth can be long and narrow; short and square; tapered; or fan-shaped, as well as too thick or too thin. Dr. John considers all these factors and will always discuss them with you if he notices areas that could use improvement.

The important point is, Dr. John considers all these factors on every patient. He always wants you to have the best possible smile you can have.