Half the nation believe the state of their teeth has held them back in their working and personal lives.
Researchers from Straight Teeth Direct found a large percentage of the population are so self-conscious about their teeth that it affects them on an almost daily basis.
Teeth came third in a list of the things in life we stress most about, with only finances and relationships ranked more highly.
In fact, one in five felt their teeth had more of a negative effect on their confidence than their physique, hair or wrinkles, while the same number said they were becoming introverted as they were so self-conscious about smiling and laughing.
It also emerged 61 per cent of the 2,000 adults who took part in the study have been affected by ‘Posh Spice Syndrome’ – being wrongly considered ‘miserable’ because they don’t smile very often.
Dr Aalok Shukla CEO at Straight Teeth Direct, said: “Smiling is the most natural thing in the world.
”It’s an important way to communicate across boundaries and languages.
“Consciously not smiling for fear of revealing your teeth can trigger a negative cycle comprising of feelings of anxiety, lack of confidence and low self-esteem.
“By connecting orthodontists to users directly through digital technology a positive cycle can be created meaning more people can finally straighten their teeth, smile freely and feel their best.”
According to the study 17 per cent of those who took part have concerns that the appearance of their smile has had a negative impact on their career.
Worryingly, one in ten went as far as to claim they have been turned down for a job due to their problematic teeth.
Over a quarter admitted they avoid smiling as much as they possibly can, with 45 per cent citing they don’t feel comfortable posting pictures of themselves grinning on social media.
And another one in 10 even confessed they couldn’t bring themselves to smile for photos on their wedding day – for fear of baring their molars.
The data shows those with stained, crooked or missing teeth are most likely to feel less confident.
According to the report, one in five of those polled said feeling this way had impacted their ability to make friends, because they are wrongly perceived as ‘miserable’ or ‘rude’.
The comprehensive study found that more than a quarter have paid for procedures to improve the appearance of their smile – spending £692.91 on average in the process.
And one in 10 said they had used an app to make their teeth look whiter and brighter in photographs.