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Evaluation of preclinical and clinical students’ perspectives on the effect of lip line and dental midline on smile aesthetics
Objective: Dentists should be able to integrate facial aesthetics by evaluating the basic features of the ideal smile, keeping in mind that aesthetics is a subjective concept. The aim of our study is to examine the perceptions of preclinical and clinical dentistry students on the effect of lip line and dental midline on smile aesthetics and to evaluate whether this perception changes according to clinical education degree and gender. Material and Methods: In the present study, preclinical and clinical students of Marmara University Faculty of Dentistry participated in a 25-question survey using the electronic questionnaire system. In the questionnaire, the demographic characteristics of the participants, their knowledge about aesthetic analyzes and their approaches to photographs with altered lip line and dental midline aesthetic parameters are questioned. A frontal smile photograph of volunteer female used for this study. 13 modified photographs were created by replacing the lip line and dental midline components. Each photograph was ordered randomly. Obtained data was analyzed with SPSS program and Chi-Square test. Results: The study included 431 dental students (132 men [30.6%], 299 women [69.4%]). Significantly more women than men focused on a person’s teeth when communicating (41.5% vs. 32.6%, p < 0.005). 6mm gingival display ranked as the worst smile feature (mean numeric rating scale score 4.71). Conclusion: Dental students at different stages of their undergraduate dental education have different perceptions of smile aesthetics. The image of the ideal smile was one of the most aesthetically pleasing smiles. A smile with a high lip line was considered significantly less pleasing.