Perception of Laypeople and Dental Professionals of Smile Esthetics
Objectives: This study aimed to assess and compare the perception of laypersons and dental professionals of smile esthetics based on two factors namely gingival display and alignment of teeth.
Materials and Methods: A total of 32 females were randomly selected among dental students in the International Campus of School of Dentistry, Tehran University of Medical Sciences (Tehran, Iran) with no previous history of esthetic dental work. Frontal photographs were obtained and cropped from the subnasal to menton areas of subjects to standardize the size of pictures. Three series of slides were prepared of the pictures using Microsoft PowerPoint software. The first series of slides were shown to familiarize the observers with the images. The second and third series were displayed for the observers and they were then asked to fill out a questionnaire. The group of observers included 10 dental specialists and 10 laypersons. Each observer was given a visual analog scale (VAS) chart for scoring (1-10). After completion of the questionnaires, data were transferred to a computer and the differences in judgments of professionals and laypeople were analyzed using the Mann Whitney test.
Results: No significant difference was found in the judgments of professionals and laypeople on evaluating overall smile esthetics, gingival display and alignment of teeth except for the slide showing a reverse smile arc.
Conclusions: Laypeople and professionals had similar perceptions of smile esthetics. Thus, it appears that clinicians can rely on the judgment of laypersons in esthetic dental treatments.
Keywords: Smiling; Perception; Esthetics, Dental