The effect of increasing vertical dimension of occlusion on facial aesthetics

  • Cell Research, February 2002, Nature Publishing Group
  • DOI: 10.1038/sj.bdj.4801324

How a procedure in dentistry can make patients look 5-20 years younger

What is it about?

The Dentalfacelift is a technique where the patient’s dentures or teeth are modified in a way that makes the whole face look between five and twenty years younger. Ninety six patients were involved in the study.

Why is it important?

Until this study, the dentist’s role in improving the patient’s appearance involved whitening the teeth, veneering or crowning the front teeth and straightening the teeth with orthodontics. The Dentalfacelift technique showed that all the features of the face could be improved. It involved dentists looking at the whole face instead of just inside the mouth. This was an iconic turning point in dentistry.

Perspectives

Naresh Kumar Mohindra

After the publication of my first paper in 1996, I was determined to continue my research. When doing innovative work, as I have said before, one finds that opening one door leads to many others. My aim at this stage was to study the effect of the Dentalfacelift technique on head and neck posture, as I had observed that changing the position of the lower jaw could lead to improved head posture. I was successful in obtaining ethical approval for this study, which is the first step in the scientific method. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts I was unable to obtain any research funding. It seemed that all such funding was awarded to Universities. As my patients continued to tell me how much better they were looking and feeling, I decided to take pictures of their faces to see if I could observe any consistent changes and patterns. As a dentist, I expected the area around the mouth to have improved, but I was surprised to discover that the eyes, skin, jowls, and cheeks also improved. Even the hair quality seemed to be improving. Mike Grace, the then editor of the British Dental Journal was again very helpful and introduced me to a statistician, John Bulman. After gathering my data, John looked at the statistics and assured me that I could categorically say that this treatment could make patients look between five and twenty years younger. It has always been my aim to put any innovative work on a scientific basis, and the second step in this process is to publish one’s findings in a peer reviewed journal. This means that the editor of the journal has asked experts in the field to evaluate the quality of the paper. Articles which fail to meet the standards of a given discipline are rejected and only articles that exemplify the best research practices are published. I was therefore delighted when as a mere general practitioner, my second paper was also accepted for publication in the internationally renowned British Dental Journal in 2002.

Read Publication

http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/sj.bdj.4801324

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