Post-orthodontic treatment questionnaire for patients and guardians
Caban, Michael D.
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Success in the practice of orthodontics depends on both the quality of the finished occlusion and the satisfaction of the patient and guardian with the care that they receive. Studies related to patient and guardian satisfaction with orthodontic treatment have been conducted in private practice and University clinics in the past, although this form of assessment has never been completed at the University at Buffalo Department of Orthodontics. A questionnaire was developed to investigate the experiences of patients and guardians during orthodontic treatment and to determine their level of satisfaction. All patients completing comprehensive orthodontic treatment between August 1, 2006 and June 20, 2008 were identified, and patient and guardian questionnaires were mailed to these individuals. Of the 260 subjects that received the mailing, 77 returned at least one of the two questionnaires, for a return rate of 29.6%. Statistical analysis was completed on the 60 data sets in which both patient and guardian questionnaires from the same family were returned. Both patients and guardians were satisfied with the overall results of the treatment, the alignment of the teeth, the smile, and the final facial appearance. The results obtained in the present study were similar to previous reports, and there were no significant differences between the levels of patient and guardian satisfaction in these areas. Improvements in self-confidence and social communication were noted by each group as well. Patients and guardians identified long treatment time and the appearance of the braces in the mouth as the most difficult aspects of orthodontic treatment.