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Volume 30 , Issue 1
January/February 2017

Pages 47–50

Sociodemographic, Educational, Behavioral, and Psychologic Factors Underlying Orofacial Esthetics and Self-Reported Oral Health

Cristina Gómez Polo, PhD/Javier Montero, PhD

PMID: 28085979
DOI: 10.11607/ijp.4944

Purpose: The aim of the present study was to compare sociodemographic, behavioral, and educational characteristics, together with personality traits, on perceptions of individuals’ own oral health and orofacial esthetics. Materials and Methods: The participants had different educational backgrounds: dentistry students and students not following health care–related courses (university groups), and volunteers with no university studies (nonstudent group). The age range was 18 to 30 years. Sociodemographic and behavioral data and data on facial and dental attractiveness were gathered via personalized interviews. Personality traits were measured using the Big Five Inventory (BFI) (extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, openness), and the Life Orientation Test was used to measure optimism and pessimism. Results: No statistically significant differences were observed among the three educational groups regarding the mean scores on the five personality variables. The nonstudent group accorded significantly greater importance to tooth color, whereas the university groups considered tooth alignment more important (P = .016). The logistic regression model used to predict perceptions about orofacial health and esthetics revealed that underlying behavioral (pattern of visits to dentist and brushing habits), psychologic (pessimism and agreeableness), and educational (training in dentistry) factors affected the participants’ perceptions of orofacial attractiveness, oral satisfaction, and self-rated oral health. Conclusions: The results of this study show that there are behavioral, psychologic, and educational factors that significantly modulate people’s perceptions of orofacial esthetics, oral satisfaction, and self-rated oral health.

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