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J Anxiety Disord. 2011 Mar;25(2):232-6. doi: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2010.09.007. Epub 2010 Sep 19.

The prevalence of dental anxiety across previous distressing experiences.

Author information

1
Health Psychology, Medical School, University of St Andrews, North Haugh, St Andrews, Fife KY16 9TR, United Kingdom. gmh4@st-and.ac.uk

Abstract

AIMS:

To compare the prevalence of high dental anxiety across a variety of past distressing experiences with a previously reported Dutch sample.

METHOD:

University students from the UK (N=1024) completed an online survey containing; the Modified Dental Anxiety Scale, and the Level of Exposure-Dental Experiences Questionnaire (LOE-DEQ). Adjusted odds ratios (OR) were calculated to assess the association of self-reported distressing experiences and dental anxiety.

RESULTS:

The percentage of respondents with high dental anxiety (HDA) (total MDAS score≥19) was 11.2%. Significant prevalence of HDA across several distressing experiences was shown in both UK and Dutch samples notably: extreme helplessness during dental treatment, lack of understanding of the dentist and extreme embarrassment during dental treatment. There were little or no effects of non-dental trauma, with the exception of sexual abuse in the UK sample.

CONCLUSIONS:

Trauma from various past experiences may be implicated in an increased risk of high dental anxiety.

PMID:
20952156
DOI:
10.1016/j.janxdis.2010.09.007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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