The Mental Representation of the Smile Before and After Orthodontic Treatment
Highlights on Medicine and Medical Research Vol. 5,
23 April 2021
Background: Understanding the importance, value, and self-image that the smile represents in the daily life of the individual remains a subject of high scientific interest.
Aim: The present qualitative and exploratory study aims at understanding the importance of the self-perception of the mouth and smile on the mental representation of self-image and the well-being of the individual.
Materials and Methods: The convenience sample consisted of 151 children and youngsters of both genders, ages 8 - 24 years, who used an orthodontic appliance and were invited to draw two portraits of their mouth/smile.
Results: The results suggest differences in the mental representation of the mouth and the smile, namely in the investment of the drawings before and after the use of the orthodontic appliance, as well as in the expressiveness and manifestation of emotions.
Discussion and Conclusions: The results suggest that the main reason that leads participants to the treatment is related to aesthetic and functional issues in which the maximizing of the mental representation of the Orthodontic Smile emerges as a new categorization of the perfect smile.
- Mental representation
- orthodontic smile
- aesthetic smile
- drawing content analysis
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