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Open Dent J. 2009 Jul 28;3:161-6. doi: 10.2174/1874210600903010161.

Dental fear: one single clinical question for measurement.

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Dental Healthcare Clinic and Public Health Center City of Turku, Finland.


A new dental fear measurement instrument, the Short Dental Fear Question (SDFQ), was developed and tested for clinical practice purposes. The correlations of the SDFQ with the Dental Anxiety Scale (DAS) and the Dental Fear Survey (DFS) were tested in 15-16-year-old adolescents. The Spearman correlations (rs) between the dental fear measurement instruments were: SDFQ - DFS: r(s) = 0.79, n = 26; DFS - DAS: r(s) = 0.72, n = 26; SDFQ- DAS: r(s) = 0.69, n = 27. DAS and DFS mean scores were clearly higher in the SDFQ fear group than SDFQ in the relaxed group. The SDFQ is a short and compact instrument which might be convenient for the measurement of dental fear in clinical practice.

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