The relationship between oral health-related quality of life, the need for orthodontic treatment and bullying, among Brazilian teenagers

ABSTRACT Introduction: Orthodontic treatment aims at oral health and restoration of function as main objectives, however, psychological and social effects end up being the main reason for the demand for treatment. Objective: To determine the association between the oral health-related quality of life (OHRQoL), the need for orthodontic treatment and bullying among Brazilian teenagers. Methods: This was a cross-sectional epidemiological study. To assess the malocclusion, the Dental Aesthetic Index was used. And the Oral Health Impact Profile-14 was used to analyze the OHRQoL. The Kidscape questionnaire was used to investigate cases of bullying. The following variables were also included: previous orthodontic treatment and a desire to fix the teeth to improve one’s appearance. Multivariate analysis was performed using logistic regression considering the poor OHRQoL as a response variable. Results: 815 teenagers participated in the study. There was a statistically significant association between oral health-related quality of life and the variables: previous orthodontic treatment (p= 0.0270), desire to fix the teeth (p< 0.0001), sex (p= 0.0309), history of being a victim of bullying (p< 0.0001), frequency of bullying episodes (p= 0.0170), and consequences of bullying (p< 0.0001). The following were considered as risk factors for poor OHRQoL: lack of previous orthodontic treatment (OR = 2.191) and negative consequences of bullying (OR = 3.042). Conclusion: The need for orthodontic treatment was not associated with the OHRQoL; however, bullying and previous orthodontic treatment had a statistically significant association with this variable.