Evaluation of Children’s and Adolescents’s Anxiety Previously Dental Treatment: A Cross-Sectional Study

Nilton Cesar Nogueira dos Santos, Rafaela Gomes de Oliveira, Leandro Almeida Nascimento Barros


Objective:To evaluate levels of anxiety in children and adolescents related to age and experience of visits to the dentist using the modified Venham Picture Test (VPTm).Material and Methods:This is a quantitative cross-sectional study with convenience sample. Children and adolescents of both sexes, subdivided into age groups of 6-9 years (A1 and A2) and 10-13 years (B1 and B2), in the waiting room of a Dental Clinic, were grouped according to the experience of visits to the dentist (have been to the dentist / have never been to the dentist). Descriptive statistics were mean, standard deviation and frequency of cases. The Kolmogorov-Smirnov (K-S) was used for normality analysis, with 95% significance level. Inferential statistics was performed using the Chi-Square and Mann-Whitney tests, with p<0.05. Results:In total, 60 children and 60 adolescents were evaluated, 65 (54.16%) males and 55 (45.83%) females. No differences were observed between genders in groups A1 and A2 (p = 0.30) and B1 and B2 (p = 0.94). The highest means of the VPTm scale were observed in groups A2 and B2 (2.87 ± 2.30 and 2.13 ± 1.29) and the lowest in groups A1 and B1 (1.13 ± 1.45 and 1.20 ± 1.29), respectively. Statistical differences were observed for the mean VPTm scores between age groups A1 and A2 (p = 0.004) and B1 and B2 (p = 0.018). Conclusion:The level of anxiety was inversely proportional to age, so younger children were more anxious; it was also observed that children and adolescents who had never been to the dentist tended to be more anxious.


Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms; Dental Anxiety; Manifest Anxiety Scale.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4034/PBOCI.2019.191.31