The Open Dentistry Journal

ISSN: 1874-2106 ― Volume 14, 2020

The Influence of Dental Occlusion on Spectrophotometric Tooth Color Determinations

Marta Mazur1, Stephen Westland2, Maciej Jedliński3, *, Antonello Maruotti4, Gianna Maria Nardi1, Livia Ottolenghi1, Fabrizio Guerra1
1 Department of Oral and Maxillo Facial Sciences, Sapienza University of Rome, Rome, Italy
2 School of Design, University of Leeds, Leeds, LS2 9JT, United Kingdom
3 Department of Orthodontics, Student Scientific Society, Pomeranian Medical University in Szczecin, al. Powstańców Wielkopolskich, Szczecin, Poland
4 Lumsa University, Borgo S. Angelo, Via della Traspontina, Rome, Italy



Shade matching is a significant treatment step and a challenge for the clinical team with potentially high costs for color correction. Currently, in the United States, the majority of private dental practitioners use visual color matching, but a recent study has reported a high rate of mistakes of subjective color determination among graduate dentists.


The aim of this retrospective study is to analyze whether a change in the oral background due to dental occlusion can influence tooth color determination.


Volunteer dental students underwent spectrophotometric color assessment using the SpectroShade device. Two measurements were carried out (with the individuals’ occlusion closed and with the occlusion open) on 43 upper central and 58 lateral incisors. Association between colorimetric variables L*, a*, b* and ΔE00 and tooth width, length and tobacco usage were examined.


Slight changes in the CIELAB values between closed and open occlusions were found for both the gingival and the central sections as for the overall tooth area, with mean ΔL*=-1.24, Δa*=-1.77, Δb*=-1.42 and ΔE00=1,84. A larger difference was detected in the incisal area, with mean ΔL*=-2.99, Δa*=-1.76, Δb*=-2.83 and ΔE00=3.65.


In conclusion, our study showed that dental occlusion does not play a significant role in tooth color matching determinations, even though attention to avoid overbite due to a maximum intercuspation should be made.

Keywords: Color, Occlusion, Color assessment, Color selection, Spectrophotometry, Colorimetry.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2020
Volume: 14
First Page: 247
Last Page: 254
Publisher Id: TODENTJ-14-247
DOI: 10.2174/1874210602014010247

Article History:

Received Date: 25/01/2020
Revision Received Date: 10/04/2020
Acceptance Date: 11/04/2020
Electronic publication date: 11/06/2020
Collection year: 2020

© 2020 Mazur et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Orthodontics, Student Scientific Society, Pomeranian Medical University in Szczecin, al. PowstańcówWielkopolskich 72, 70-111 Szczecin, Poland; Tel: +48 91 466 1706; E-mail:

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