Can parents and children evaluate each other's dental fear?

Department of Community Dentistry, Institute of Dentistry, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.
European Journal Of Oral Sciences (Impact Factor: 1.49). 06/2010; 118(3):254-8. DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0722.2010.00727.x
Source: PubMed


Luoto A, Tolvanen M, Rantavuori K, Pohjola V, Lahti S. Can parents and children evaluate each other’s dental fear? Eur J Oral Sci 2010; 118: 254–258. © 2010 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2010 Eur J Oral Sci
The aim of this study was to determine whether parents and their 11–16-yr-old children can evaluate each other’s dental fear. At baseline the participants were 11–12-yr-old children from the Finnish Cities of Pori (n = 1,691) and Rauma (n = 807), and one of their parents. The children and their parents were asked if they or their family members were afraid of dental care. Fears were assessed using single 5-point Likert-scale questions that included a ‘do not know’ option. Children and parents answered the questionnaire independently of each other. Background variables were the child’s and their parent’s gender. Parents’ and children’s knowledge of each other’s dental fear was evaluated with kappa statistics and with sensitivity and specificity statistics using dichotomized fear variables. All kappa values were < 0.42. When dental fear among children and parents was evaluated, all sensitivities varied between 0.10 and 0.39, and all specificities varied between 0.93 and 0.99. Evaluating dental fear among fearful children and parents, the sensitivities varied between 0.17 and 0.50 and the specificities varied between 0.85 and 0.94, respectively. Parents and children could not recognize each other’s dental fear. Therefore, parents and children cannot be used as reliable proxies for determining each other’s dental fear.

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    • "Inne badanie, w którym rodzice i ich dzieci w wieku 11–16 lat, oceniali nawzajem poziom swojego strachu dentystycznego, udowodniło, że rodzice nie są w stanie wiarygodnie określić poziom lęku swojego dziecka. Autorzy tego badania wywnioskowali, że ocena strachu stomatologicznego wśród młodzieży w wieku 11–16 lat powinna opierać się tylko na informacjach uzyskanych od samego dziecka [28]. Inni badacze zalecają, aby metody samooceny stosowane były już u dzieci w wieku 8 lat jako uzupełnienie oceny lęku dziecka przez jego rodzica [27]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Aim The objectives of this article are to approach the problem of dental fear in children and adolescents, which is met by dentists in dental practices and to describe the methods of its evaluation. There are objective and subjective methods for the assessment of the intensity of dental anxiety. These methods can be useful for treatment planning in anxious patients. Overview The dental fear and anxiety of a child patient which is associated with a dental appointment may take many different forms. An adequate evaluation of the behaviour of a child patient in the dental treatment is very important at the very first contact with the dentist, as it allows the dental team to choose the right method. In dental practices especially those, who do not specialize in pediatric dentistry, may barely have skills sufficient to properly evaluate the behaviour of a young patient. This results in the selection of inappropriate methods of conduct with a child, during the first appointment, the consequence of which is a lack of cooperation during treatments, present and future. Conclusions Dentists lacking abilities and experience to assess patients’ behaviour, should considering a wider variety of evaluation methods for dental anxiety in children and adolescents. A proper relationship between dentist and patient will have a positive influence on children's attitudes in dental treatment and will improve the comfort of work and increase the effectiveness of the treatment.
    Postepy Psychiatrii i Neurologii 03/2014; 23(1):47–52. DOI:10.1016/
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    • "The children in grades 1 and 2 filled the forms at home with the help of their parents which makes the results more reliable for them. Even if parents may not be aware of their children's fear [10], they can be expected to know about 1st and 2nd graders tooth brushing habits. A deficiency of this study is also the lack of IDs of the respondents which hinders comparing results on the survey in 2009 and 2010 at individual basis, as well as having information on attendance in oral health promotion program at individual basis. "
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of a school-based intervention project conducted in a mid-sized Finnish city, Laukaa on schoolchildren's oral health behavior. Material and Methods. In the intervention, all children received dental education and some of the 7-12-year-old schoolchildren received individual tooth brushing instructions by a dental nurse in 2009-2010. Parents were present at the instruction sessions. In 2009 and 2010, all the children answered a questionnaire or an oral hygienist on their oral health behavior without identification. Results. Tooth brushing frequency increased significantly among the schoolchildren between the years 2009 (61.2%) and 2010 (65%) (P < 0.05); more so among younger children (7-10-year-olds) compared to the older ones (11-12-year-olds). The 2010 results showed a slight trend of decreasing tooth brushing frequency by age both among girls and boys. Younger children got significantly more often parental help or reminding. The girls brushed their teeth significantly more frequently (71.9%) than boys (57.0%). Conclusions. Our findings indicate that oral health intervention can be beneficial on health behavior especially for children at low grades. All children, 11 to 12 years of age, especially boys, need continuous health promotion.
    International Journal of Dentistry 11/2013; 2013:485741. DOI:10.1155/2013/485741
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    ABSTRACT: The databases CINAHL, EMbase, Medline, PsycINFO, Cochrane/DARE EBM were searched using OVID together with the reference lists of retrieved papers. Studies in English and German which investigated the relationship between parental and child dental fear and included children and young people aged 0-19 years were included. Particular emphasis was placed on studies which used established behaviour and anxiety measures to assess parental and child dental anxiety or child behaviour. A qualitative synthesis of the included studies was conducted with those studies which provided sufficient quantitative estimates of association between parental and child measures to enable transformation into effect sizes being used in a meta-analysis. A random-effects model was used. Forty-three studies were included from across the six continents. The studies ranged widely with respect to research design, methods used, age of children included and the reported link between parental and child dental fear. The majority of studies confirmed a relationship between parental and child dental fear. This relationship is most evident in children aged 8 years and under. A meta-analysis confirmed an association between parental and child dental fear. The narrative synthesis as well as the meta-analysis demonstrate a significant relationship between parental and child dental fear, particularly in children aged 8 years and under.
    Evidence-based dentistry 01/2010; 11(3):77. DOI:10.1038/sj.ebd.6400736
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