DAI--the dental aesthetic index

Cons, Naham C., 1913-, Kohout, Frank J. and Jenny, Joanna, 1931- DAI--the dental aesthetic index. Iowa City, Iowa, USA: College of Dentistry, University of Iowa, 1986.

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Author Cons, Naham C., 1913-
Kohout, Frank J.
Jenny, Joanna, 1931-
Title DAI--the dental aesthetic index
Place of Publication Iowa City, Iowa, USA
Publisher College of Dentistry, University of Iowa
Publication year 1986
Sub-type Other
Open Access Status Not Open Access
ISBN 0874140528 (pbk.)
Language eng
Total number of pages xviii, 134
Subjects 1105 Dentistry
Formatted Abstract/Summary

Recent research findings are challenging traditional opinions about the major benefits of orthodontic treatment. The importance of orthodontic care in the prevention of caries, periodontal disease and temporo-mandibular disorders is beginning to be doubted. Orthodontists now view the impact of dental and facial characteristics on an individual's social and psychological well-being as perhaps more important than their impact on physical health. Current social science research indicates that unacceptable dental appearance, including visible dental characteristics that deviate greatly from the norm, are phenomena that may stigmatize, impede career advancement and peer group acceptance, encourage negative stereotyping and may have a negative effect on self-concept.

Orthodontic treatment is more often sought for aesthetic rather than functional considerations because it is assumed that failure to meet social norms for dental aesthetics will have negative psychosocial effects. It has been suggested that orthodontic treatment is not justifiable on the basis that without it negative physical sequellae will occur. Orthodontists predict that the psychosocial component of malocclusion will continue to be one of the strongest motivators for orthodontic treatment.

Several investigators have addressed and symposia have focused on the relations between psychosocial handicap and occlusal status. Until now satisfactory methods were not available for measuring the most important element of occlusal status in terms of social functioning, dental aesthetics, or for ranking dental aesthetics according to society's aesthetic norms. To answer questions regarding the association between malocclusion and socio-psychological well-being a new index was needed that measured and ranked dental aesthetics objectively and reliably. 

The Dental Aesthetic Index (DAI) described here is a new index obtained from a number of objective physical measurements and designed specifically to measure dental aesthetics. It assesses the relative social acceptability of dental appearance based upon the public's perceptions of dental aesthetics. The DAI was developed using photographs of occlusal configurations as "stiumuli" representing the wide range of occlusal conditions found in a natural population of 500,000 adolescents. These stimuli were rated for social acceptability by adolescents and adults. Mean scores for social acceptability of these stimuli were related by factor analysis and stepwise regression procedures to the occlusal trait measurements that were available for each of the occlusal configurations. The resulting regression equation consisting of the 10 components (physical measurements of occlusal traits) of the DAI and their appropriate regression coefficients (weights) is called the Dental Aesthetic Index (DAI). The DAI was validated by a statistical procedure known as double cross-validation.

The DAI provides dental epidemiologists and social scientists with a research tool to rank a person's dental aesthetics on a scale of societal norms for socially acceptable dental appearance. It also provides administrators of public or third party orthodontic programs with a method to screen and identify children eligible for programs because of the deviation of their dental configurations from society's norms for aesthetic dental appearance. The DAI can be used to estimate need and shows potential for estimating desire for orthodontic care in target populations. It will help providers and administrators of public orthodontic care justify treatment based on the potential benefits of such care in terms of the improved social functioning and career opportunities that can result from improved dental appearance.

The DAI was designed for intraoral use without the use of radiographs in clinical assessments of people with permanent dentitions. In field surveys, trained auxiliaries can measure the components of the DAI. The 10 components of the DAI and their rounded regression weights are presented here to illustrate the calculation of a DAI score.                  .................................
Keyword Dentistry--Aesthetic aspects--Standards
Malocclusion -- Psychological aspects
Malocclusion -- Social aspects -- United States
Dental surveys -- United States
Esthetics, Dental
Social Values
Q-Index Code AX
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Unknown
Additional Notes Also Titled: Dental aesthetic index

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Created: Fri, 06 Jan 2017, 19:02:50 EST by Ms Christine Heslehurst on behalf of Scholarly Communication and Digitisation Service