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J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent. 2013 Jul-Sep;31(3):175-9. doi: 10.4103/0970-4388.117977.

The relationship between dental anxiety in children, adolescents and their parents at dental environment.

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Department of Surgery and Orthopedics, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil.



The aim of the present study was to compare trait anxiety and dental anxiety among children, adolescents and their parents.


A cross-sectional study was conducted involving 100 patients from the Pediatric Dentistry Clinic of the Federal University of Parana (Brazil) between the ages of 8 and 17 years (mean age: 10.3; standard deviation: 2.03) and their parents, who responded to Corah's Dental Anxiety Scale (DAS) and the Trait Anxiety Scale. The data were analyzed using the Mann-Whitney test, analysis of variance and both Pearson's and Spearman's correlation coefficients.


Ninety percent of children and adolescents and 76% of the parents had moderate anxiety based on the DAS score. Seventy-four percent of children and adolescents and 72% of the parents had moderate anxiety based on the Trait Anxiety Scale score. The trait anxiety and dental anxiety scores were correlated among the adults (rs = 0.64) and children (r = 0.52), whereas no correlation between scores was found among the adolescents. Associations were also found between children's trait anxiety and the dental and trait anxiety of their parents (both r = 0.43).


A moderate degree of dental anxiety was prevalent among the children, adolescents and parents who took part in this investigation, with correlations demonstrated between some trait anxiety and dental anxiety scores.

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