Psychosocial impact of dental esthetics regulates motivation to seek orthodontic treatment

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The aim of this study was to evaluate the psychosocial impact of dental esthetics for adults seeking orthodontic treatment.


The Chinese version of the Psychosocial Impact of Dental Aesthetics Questionnaire (PIDAQ) was administered to 393 adults, aged 18 to 30 years. The participants were divided into 2 groups: an intervention group (received orthodontic treatment) and a control group (rejected orthodontic treatment). Baseline malocclusion severity was assessed using the Index of Orthodontic Treatment Need (IOTN).


The Wilcoxon signed rank test showed no statistically significant difference between the groups for the dental health component (DHC) of the IOTN (P = 0.134). Total and subscale PIDAQ scores of the intervention group were higher than those of the control group and differed significantly in each group among the 4 IOTN-DHC grades; self-confidence scores in the control group (F = 1.802; P >0.05) were the exception. Correlations between the PIDAQ scores and the IOTN-DHC grades were strong in each group. DHC grades, psychological impact, social impact, and aesthetic concern had significant impacts on patients accepting orthodontic treatment.


The psychosocial impact of dental esthetics played an important role in the decision-making process of adults seeking orthodontic treatment. Importantly, participants with low self-awareness of the potential psychosocial impact rejected orthodontic treatment, despite the need for severe normative treatment.

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