The relationship between facial skeletal class and expert-rated interpersonal skill: an epidemiological survey on young Italian adults

Senna, Andrea; Abbenante, Domenico; Tremolizzo, Lucio; Campus, Guglielmo; Strohmenger, Laura
January 2006
BMC Psychiatry;2006, Vol. 6, p41
Academic Journal
Background: The facial region plays a major role in determining physical attractiveness, so we assessed the hypothesis that the capability of successfully managing interpersonal relationships in young adults might be related to the facial skeletal class. Methods: 1,014 young subjects applying to the Military Academy of Pozzuoli, Italy, were enrolled and the cephalometric evaluation was performed by calculating the angular relationships between skeletal points localized by the lateral cephalogram of the face, sorting the subjects in three groups corresponding to each major facial skeletal class. Concurrently, the subjects were evaluated by a team of psychiatrists administering the MMPI-2 test followed by a brief colloquium with each candidate, in order to identify those subjects characterized by low skills for managing interpersonal relationships. Results: According to the psychiatric evaluation about 20% of the subjects were considered potentially unable to manage successfully interpersonal relationships (NS). Males displayed an about two-fold increased risk of being NS. No differences were shown in the distribution of the NS male subjects among the three different facial skeletal classes. On the other hand, NS females displayed a different distribution among the three facial skeletal classes, with a trend of about two-fold and four-fold, respectively, for those subjects belonging to classes II and III, respect to those belonging to class I. Conclusion: Females may be more sensitive to physical factors determining beauty, such as the facial morphology certainly is. This finding appears to be interesting especially when thinking about possible orthodontic interventions, although further study is certainly needed to confirm these results.


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