Examination of Natural Tooth Color Distribution Using Visual and Instrumental Shade Selection Methods

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Summary

Aim: Although visual color determination is the most frequently applied method in dentistry, instrumental color analysis offers advantages like objectivity, measurability and rapidity. The aim of this study was to evaluate the natural teeth color in teeth without any restoration visually, and by using a computerized shade measuring and analyzing system in the population.

Materials and Methods: 202 patients were inspected. Before instrumental shade matching visual matching was done by the inspector with Vitapan 3D Master Shade Guide in the day light. Images were taken with computerized shade measuring and analyzing system from patients’ natural right or left maxillary incisors and canines without any restoration. Then these images were evaluated by the original software of its own.

Results: Value differences between visual and instrumental shade matching were statistically significant. Darker value levels were obtained with instrumental measurement. The distribution of hue was more reddish in instrumental examination than visual examination. Significant difference was found at cervical and middle third of the tooth in both visual and instrumental determination of chroma. Chroma of the tooth was higher at these two regions in visual assessment.

Conclusions: Teeth colors were distributed more uniform in visual shade matching compared to instrumental matching. However, some teeth shades were more common in instrumental matching. Value scores were found higher with instrumental shade matching. Individual selection of shades for each tooth and different regions of a tooth instead of a single color is considered to be a factor to increase the success of the restoration.

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