Objectives: Traditional methods for evaluating aesthetic perceptions of the teeth have involved panels of people observing photographs, and the person commenting on the appearance of the teeth generally is aware that his opinion of the dental appearance is being sought. The situation is artificial and may involve bias. We propose a novel method for evaluating the effect of dental imperfections on perceptions in which the participant is unaware of participating in a survey and in which his or her opinion is not sought. Rather, involvement in the study betrays the importance of dental aesthetics for the observer. Methods: Starting with a digitally manipulated photograph of a smiling young woman, two portrait photographs A and B were produced in which the only differences were in the dentition revealed by the smile. The two photographs were anonymously posted on an online dating service site covering two large cities in southwestern France. During a period of one month, all “hits” on each of the photographs and all attempts to make contact were counted. Results: There was no significant difference between the number of hits on each of the portraits A and B. On the other hand, the ratio of attempts to contact to hits showed a clear difference: the ratio was 4.8 times greater for Portrait A than for Portrait B (p < 0.001). Conclusions: Digital manipulation of a photograph and internet dating sites provide an alternative to traditional questionnaires for evaluation of the contribution of dental factors to a person’s physical attractiveness.
Cite this paper
Lopez, Y. , Rouzic, J. , Bertaud, V. , Pérard, M. , Clerc, J. and Vulcain, J. (2013) Influence of teeth on the smile and physical attractiveness. A new internet based assessing method. Open Journal of Stomatology
, 52-57. doi: 10.4236/ojst.2013.31010
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