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Minerva Stomatologica 2020 Sep 02

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4970.20.04412-X

Copyright © 2020 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

lingua: Inglese

Negative social comparisons and social discomfort in dentofacial deformity: a cross-sectional study

Maria SILVA 1, Inês FRANCISCO 2, David SANZ 3, Lara PALMEIRA 4, Francisco VALE 2

1 Faculty of Medicine of the University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal; 2 Institute of Orthodontics, Faculty of Medicine of the University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal; 3 Department of Maxillofacial Surgery of the Hospital of the University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal; 4 CINEICC - Center for Research in Neuropsychology and Cognitive and Behavioral Intervention, Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences, University of Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal



BACKGROUND: Patients with severe dentofacial deformities are more susceptible to psychological distress since they are more likely to be emotionally unstable, less sociable and have higher levels of anxiety and neuroticism. The aim of this study is to assess the relationship between dentofacial deformity, negative social comparisons, anxiety and discomfort in social situations due to face appearance in two independent samples.
METHODS: The sample consisted of 136 patients (Group A- 90 college students; Group B- 46 patients with dentofacial dysmorphosis that require orthognathic surgery). The impact of dentofacial deformity was evaluated through the following questionnaires: scale of social comparison through the appearance of the face and the scale of anxiety and discomfort in social situations due to the appearance of the face.
RESULTS: Group B showed higher levels of anxiety and discomfort than the college student’s sample (p = .004). Individuals with dentofacial dysmorphosis presented a greater degree of anxiety and discomfort than individuals without dentofacial dysmorphosis (p = .002). Finally, skeletal pattern and social comparison predicted anxiety and discomfort in the group A [F (1.88) = 7.270; p<.05], but only social comparison emerged as a significant predictor of anxiety and discomfort in the group B [F (2, 42) = 4.463; p<.05].
CONCLUSIONS: Patients with dentofacial deformity have higher levels of anxiety and discomfort. This deformity can be reduced with orthodontic-surgical treatment, which can promote improvements in social and interpersonal well-being.


KEY WORDS: Body image; Anxiety; Mental health; Orthognathic surgery

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