Colour preferences of patients receiving elastic ligatures in fixed orthodontic treatment
Introduction: Elastic ligatures are commonly used in fixed orthodontic treatment. They are used to hold arch wires to the brackets. Manufacturers fabricate elastic ligatures in a number of different colors. While colored elastic ligatures tend to be more attractive, acceptance of the use of such ligatures varies a great deal with age and gender. Although it is suggested that an orthodontist should stock at least ten different colors of elastic ligatures at all times, little is actually known about the patients’ color preferences for elastic ligatures. The aim of this study was to evaluate the color preference of patients receiving elastic ligatures in fixed orthodontic treatment.
Material and Methods: One hundred patients undergoing fixed orthodontic treatment at Armed Forces Institute of Dentistry were selected for this study. A self-administered questionnaire was used to assess the patients’ preference regarding elastic ligatures. Questions regarding choice of colored vs transparent ligatures, lighter vs darker shades, change of ligatures for specific occasions and the favourite color of each individual were asked. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 24.
Results: While 28% of the subjects preferred transparent ligatures, 72% preferred them colored. Of these 72, 36% preferred lighter shades while 52.7% preferred darker shades. A statistically significant difference was found between males and females in terms of color preference with p = 0.006 while no association of color preference with age could be found.Conclusions: Patient preference for the ligature colours must be kept in mind when maintaining Orthodontic inventory.