Factors Influencing Dental Anxiety Using a Modified Dental Anxiety Scale (MDAS)

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Christos Dimitriou, Kristopher L. Schmidt, Hongtao Li

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Published: 25 January 2024 | Article Type : Research Article

Abstract

While multiple investigations show that dental treatments are associated with patient anxiety, the most relevant contributing factors to dental anxiety are not fully understood. This study explored the prevalence and causes of dental anxiety in patients from Northern Virginia USA. Participants (n=57) were given a survey that included demographic questions, a modified dental anxiety scale (MDAS, Cronbach’s alpha = 0.908), and an opportunity to self-report the causes of their dental anxiety. Survey results were analyzed via an ANOVA using JASP software to determine the most significant factors contributing to dental treatment anxiety. A majority of patients (57.9%) reported some degree of dental anxiety, with many patients reporting high-anxiety (21.2%) and dental phobia (19.2%). In contrast to other studies, females only had slightly higher levels of dental anxiety compared to their male counterparts, scoring 1.67 points higher on the MDAS. Importantly, individuals that visit the dentist on a primarily emergency basis have significantly higher levels of dental anxiety compared to their counterparts (p<0.0001). This study suggests that regular dental visits are associated with decreased treatment anxiety and that clinicians should promote routine dental care alongside other anxiety reducing interventions as a way to minimize dental treatment anxiety

Keywords: Dentistry, Dental Anxiety, Modified Dental Anxiety Scale (MDAS), Dental Treatment Frequency.

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Research Article

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Citation:

Christos Dimitriou, Kristopher L. Schmidt, Hongtao Li. (2024-01-25). "Factors Influencing Dental Anxiety Using a Modified Dental Anxiety Scale (MDAS)." *Volume 5*, 1, 1-16