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Eur Arch Paediatr Dent. 2007 Dec;8(4):211-4.

Short communication: dental anxiety levels and outcomes of care: a preliminary report on experiences of a sedation assessment clinic.

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  • 1Dept. Child Dental Health and Orthodontics, Glasgow Dental Hospital and School, Glasgow, Scotland.



This was twofold: (1) to report on the type of paediatric patient referred to the sedation assessment clinic at the Glasgow Dental Hospital and School, and (2) to report on the level of anxiety.


This was a two-part study. The first part was a retrospective review of case notes to evaluate referral pathways to and from the sedation assessment clinic with regard to a range of variables. The second part was a prospective clinical report of dental anxiety.


It was noted that 31 (67.4%) of patients were initially referred by their general dental practitioner, 7 (15.2%) by community dental surgeons and 8 (17.4%) by hospital dental surgeons. At the initial referral, 4 children (9%) showed symptoms of pain. The majority of patients were from lower social economic areas, as determined by DEPCAT score and exhibiting moderate to high anxiety levels. The children who were referred for general anaesthesia had the highest anxiety scores. Out of a total of 46 patients, five failed to complete treatment within the modality laid out for them at the assessment clinic.


(1) The patients attending the newly established sedation assessment clinic were mainly high caries risk, socially deprived patients and (2) that the majority of patients were dentally anxious, the most anxious appearing to have been referred for treatment under general anaesthesia.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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