Objective: To investigate the effects of the width and cross-sectional shape of the major connectors of maxillary dentures located in the middle area of the palate on the accuracy of phonetic output of consonants using an originally developed speech recognition system.
Patients and methods: Nine adults (4 males and 5 females, aged 24-26 years) with sound dentition were recruited. The following six sounds were considered: [∫i], [t∫i], [ɾi], [ni], [çi], and [ki]. The experimental connectors were fabricated to simulate bars (narrow, 8-mm width) and plates (wide, 20-mm width). Two types of cross-sectional shapes in the sagittal plane were specified: flat and plump edge. The appearance ratio of phonetic segment labels was calculated with the speech recognition system to indicate the accuracy of phonetic output. Statistical analysis was conducted using one-way ANOVA and Tukey's test.
Results: The mean appearance ratio of correct labels (MARC) significantly decreased for [ni] with the plump edge (narrow connector) and for [ki] with both the flat and plump edge (wide connectors). For [çi], the MARCs tended to be lower with flat plates. There were no significant differences for the other consonants.
Conclusion: The width and cross-sectional shape of the connectors had limited effects on the articulation of consonants at the palate.
© 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.