For many people in the U.S. and other western countries, crooked teeth are embarrassing. People spend thousands of dollars attempting to correct crooked teeth and get that "perfect" smile.
A growing trend in Japanese dentistry does exactly the opposite. The "yaeba" or "double tooth" in Japanese is a cosmetic dentistry trend that actually makes teeth appear less perfect by simulating crooked, protruding canine teeth. The New York Daily News reports that this procedure has become extremely popular among young women and adolescent girls.
What is a "yaeba"?
For many children and adolescents, their permanent adult teeth grow in before their jaw has fully grown able to accommodate the larger teeth. This causes crowding and often times forces the canine teeth to protrude out from the other teeth.
Cosmetic dentists in Japan are now offering a procedure to create the snaggletooth smile that so many westerners find unsightly and embarrassing. Caps are placed over the top canine teeth to elongate them and make them appear to protrude or overlap.
Why is a yaeba desired?
In Japanese culture, like many western cultures, women strive to appear younger to be more attractive to men. Since this type of tooth crowding most often occurs around puberty, many Japanese women feel that a yaeba makes them look younger. It is said that Japanese men find a yaeba cute and attractive and that it can make a very beautiful woman seem more approachable.
How much does the procedure cost?
The Japanese Daily Press reports that yaeba procedures can cost anywhere from $200-$500, although many dental offices offer discounts for middle and high school student. On the other hand, U.S. dental patients often pay thousands to achieve a perfectly aligned smile.
Is the yaeba procedure permanent?
Dentists throughout Japan offer both temporary and permanent yaeba procedures. The tooth caps can be applied using a temporary or permanent glue. According to Digital Journal, patients wishing to have their smile returned to its pre-yaeba condition may pay as much as the original procedure.
Japanese fashion often borrows from western culture, but not in this case. While Japanese women do value a young appearance much like western women do, the yaeba is a new and unique way to achieve it.
Will the yaeba become the next dental trend in the U.S.? With the western obsession with perfection, it's highly unlikely. The U.S. cosmetic dentistry industry focuses on creating a straight, bright white smile. Not crooked teeth. But who knows? Anything's possible! If you need to find a dentist in your area, visit Bruce Mathes DDS.