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Vol. 71, No. 11
ISSN: 1488-2159
December 2005


Laypersons' Perceptions of the Esthetics of Visible Anterior Occlusion


• Carlos Flores-Mir, DDS, Cert Ortho, PhD •
• Eduardo Silva, DDS •
• Maria I. Barriga, DDS •
• Renzo H. Valverde, DDS, MSc, Cert Ortho •
• Manuel O. Lagravère, DDS, MSc •
• Paul W. Major, DDS, MSc, MRCD(C) •

A b s t r a c t

Objective: To analyze 6 different types of visible anterior occlusion, exclusive of extraoral facial features, in terms of their esthetic appeal, as perceived by 91 randomly selected adult laypersons with different levels of education in Lima, Peru.

Methods: Photographic images of 3 examples of each occlusion type (open bite [OB],
deep bite [DB], crossbite [CB], end-to-end bite [EE], crowded bite [CwB] and ideal bite [IB]) were prepared. Evaluators used a visual analogue scale (VAS) to rate their perceptions of the esthetic appeal of each view. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to test differences in mean scores among occlusion types and to test the effect of evaluator characteristics on perceived attractiveness.

Results: The mean score was highest for IB, followed by EE, DB, CB, CwB and OB. Oneway ANOVA with Bonferroni post hoc test showed no difference between the highestscoring occlusion types (IB and EE, p > 0.99); each of the remaining groups was significantly different from both IB and EE (p < 0.001). The scores for DB, CB, CwB and OB were progressively lower, although not significantly different from one another (p > 0.05). Univariate ANOVA to determine the effects of evaluator characteristics (age, level of education, gender and interaction between level of education and gender) showed that gender was a significant factor (p < 0.034) for all bite groups except OB. Level of education was significant only for OB (p = 0.020) and age only for EE (p = 0.011). The interaction between level of education and gender was significant for all bite types (p < 0.046).

Conclusions: Lay evaluators identified ideal and EE bite occlusal relationships as esthetically most pleasing. They judged DB, CB, CwB and OB bite relationships as less esthetically pleasing but did not differentiate between these types of malocclusions.


MeSH Key Words: attitude to health; esthetics, dental; malocclusion/psychology; self concept
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