The Art of Smile Transformation
What Dr. Maddahi Looks For In a Smile
(Before You Even Open Your Mouth)
Award-winnng Los Angeles Cosmetic Dentist Kourosh Maddahi has completed thousands of successful smile transformations, turning imperfect and flawed smiles into beautiful, radiant, natural smiles.
You may have seen him on television, performing a rapid smile makeover that transforms not the person's looks but their entire life as well. And if you haven't seen him, you have certainly seen his work: he counts many Hollywood stars and celebrities among his thousands of clients.
Dr. Maddahi has spearheaded many advances in the field of Cosmetic Dentistry during his 24 years in private practice in Los Angeles. He focuses his practice on smile transformations, both dramatic full-mouth resotrations and small transformations that can still make a world of difference.
In this exclusive online interview, Dr. Maddahi reveals exactly what he is looking for when he sees a new patient, and what he can learn about your smile, its flaws, and how to perfect it – without even examining your teeth.
Q: We've heard that when you do a smile makeover, you like to start by talking with the person rather than by examining their teeth. Why is that?
Dr. Maddahi: In any smile makeover it is very important for me to talk with the patient, and find out exactly what that person is looking for. Sometimes a person knows exactly what it is about their smile that they don't like, and what it is that they would like to change.
Sometimes the person is simply dissatisfied, and wants a change, without knowing exactly what should be changed. And usually, it's a combination of these things. But anyone sitting in my office has a story to tell me about their smile. It's important to both of us that I listen to that story, and that I understand it.
The only way that a smile makeover can be considered successful is if I understand what it is that the patient wants, and then I give them exactly that.
But of course, listening to the patient is only half of the story. When we are talking, I am also observing the patient, and that will tell me many things about their smile as well.
Q: Now we are intrigued. What can you learn about someone's teeth just by watching them during a conversation?
Dr. Maddahi: There are so many things that I can learn, just by observation. Sometimes they are things that the patient is very aware of – but often they are also things that they don't realize are there, and that those are in fact things that can be fixed with attention to the teeth.
Your teeth provide the underlying structure for your entire lower face – your lips, your cheek, even your jaw and your chin are all supported and shaped by your teeth. Because of this, I can look at your face and see many things not just about the way your teeth are right now, but also how they have changed over time.
Q: Can you give us some examples?
Dr. Maddahi: Of course. Let's start with the lips.
The position and fullness of your lips is determined by your teeth. So one of the first things that I look at is to see how full your lips are. If your lips aren't even and full, I ask, "Why not?"
If your top lip is not as full as your bottom lip, I know that your top teeth are receded or pushed back from their ideal position.
If you have lines going down at the corner of your lips, I know that your bite has changed over time, and that your teeth have worn down.
If your bottom lip is going in and narrowed, I would expect to see that your bottom teeth are crowded together, narrowing your bottom arch:
Q: Wow. And that's just from the lips? What else can you tell just by looking at someone talking?
Dr. Maddahi: You would be surprised at how much I look for. I can also tell a lot about a person's teeth by looking at the shape of their face. If a person's face has gotten more square over time, that tells me that they clench and grind their teeth. I will expect to see some of their teeth to be quite ground down.
When a person smiles, if the smile is crooked or I can see dark holes inside their mouth on either side of their smile, then I know that their teeth have moved out of place, probably crowded in.
When someone bites down, the top teeth should cover about one third of the lower teeth. If more of the lower teeth are exposed, then I know that the top teeth have shortened over time, usually from grinding.
Q: So you see all these things that you see when you look at a person – asymmetrical lips, lines by the mouth, a squared face, a crooked smile – are these things that you can help to change by fixing their teeth?
Dr. Maddahi: Absolutely! As you change the teeth – the structural support for the lips, cheeks and chin – you will of course be changing the way that they appear. For example, when we used the correct thickness of veneers and crowns to bring this patient's teeth forward and into a more ideal position, her lips became fuller and more symmetrical in appearance. We were also able to widen her smile.
Q: Not to mention that her teeth look straighter and brighter, but completely natural! Did you remove her mercury fillings as well?
Dr. Maddahi: Yes. In our office we use a completely safe protocol to remove those silver-colored fillings. I replaced them for her with tooth-colored materials that are compatible with her own biochemistry and don't contain any toxins.
Q: What about all of those other patients you used as examples?
Dr. Maddahi: Smile transformations helped each of them. Each one had a particular goal or desire, so each makeover resulted in a changed appearance to meet that goal. If you visit our Smile Gallery, you can find out more about each of them, and how their smiles were transformed!
Come in for a Complimentary Cosmetic Exam & Consultation
Your initial consultation and exam with Dr. Maddahi is free. In a thorough, 41-point exam, Dr. Maddahi will listen to your story, and thoroughly examine your teeth, gums and entire mouth.
Dr. Maddahi will also evaluate your smile and help you select the best possible way in which you can get the changes that you want. He will carefully formulate a treatment plan just for you to make sure that your smile transformation is exactly what you want it to be. Come in and see Dr. Maddahi for a Complimentary Exam and Consultation and find out exactly how you can have a beautiful, confident smile.
(NOTE: There may be a charge if x-rays are necessary. We encourage our patients to bring x-rays to their first visit if you have had them taken recently.)