If you’re single and would rather not be, here’s an eye-opening statistic:  Two in five Americans would not go on a second date with someone who has crooked teeth.

vertical portrait of a man with chocolates and a rose being stood by his girlfriend on valentines day

That information and much more was revealed in two online surveys conducted in 2012 and 2013 for Invisalign, the maker of invisible braces. The more recent survey was commissioned in honor of National Singles Week, Sept. 15-21. And if you’re wondering why your love life isn’t as perfect as you’d like it to be – and your teeth aren’t perfect, either – you may find some clues here.

According to these studies, a beautiful smile has more effect on how others perceive you than most people think. The earlier study found that people with straight teeth were judged to be not only more attractive, but more successful, popular, intelligent and healthy as well.

What’s more, these impressions are often formed within the first three seconds of meeting someone. If your smile shows gleaming straight teeth, you have a much better chance of making that first impression a positive one.

Here are more results singles might take to heart:

  • Love at first sight:  It’s less likely to happen if you have crooked teeth. Singles with straight teeth are 57 percent more likely than those with crooked teeth to get a date based on their photo alone.
  • Kissability:  Nearly three out of four single Americans (74 percent) would rather kiss someone with a nice smile than someone with crooked teeth.
  • Love life:  Half of American singles think people with nicer smiles have more sex, and 16 percent of singles believe they would have more sex if they had straighter teeth.
  • Self-confidence:  When asked what personal traits made adults self-conscious, 30 percent cited crooked teeth. Conversely, people with straight teeth are perceived as being more confident and, in fact, often are more confident.
  • Marriage:  Nearly one in five singles believe they are unmarried because of their crooked teeth, and more than one in five feel that having straighter teeth would help them change their status from “single” to “in a relationship.”

If you’re considering having your teeth straightened but don’t think two to three years of metal mouth will attract a special someone, there’s an alternative:  Invisalign, or invisible braces. In our office, we always suggest our adult patients choose Invisalign.

Invisalign straightens your misaligned teeth with a progressive series of clear trays, or aligners, shaped to fit and move your teeth. As the name suggests, they are barely visible while you’re wearing them. In fact, your smile will just continue to grow more beautiful throughout your Invisalign treatment.

Unlike metal braces, the Invisalign trays can be removed when you eat or brush your teeth, allowing you to enjoy social events – and eat whatever you like – as well as keep your teeth and gums healthy throughout your treatment.

In our practice, we have seen remarkable results when adults choose Invisalign, not only in a patient’s smile but in overall appearance and, especially, in the sparkle of increased self-confidence!