Self-reported dental anxiety by children attended in the Dental School of the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais:

associated factors and correlation with parents’ dental fear


  • Ana Clara Ferreira de Paiva Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
  • Jéssica Madeira Bittencourt Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
  • Letícia Pereira Martins Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
  • Saul Martins Paiva Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais
  • Cristiane Baccin Bendo Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais



Dental anxiety, Paediatric Dentistry, Behavior


Aim: To evaluate the presence of dental anxiety in children who receive dental care in the Pediatric Dentistry Clinic of the School of Dentistry at Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (FAO-UFMG) and their correlation with their parents’/guardians’ dental fears. This study also seeks to evaluate the association between these children’s dental anxiety with the type of necessary dental treatment, the time needed for treatment at FAOUFMG, and their behavior.

Methods: A cross-sectional convenience study was conducted with 65 children of 4 to 11 years of age who received dental care in the Pediatric Dentistry Clinic of the FAO-UFMG and their parents/guardians. The questionnaires “Modified Venham Picture Test” and “Dental Fear Survey” were used to measure the self-reported dental anxiety and fear concerning the dental treatment of the children and their parents, respectively. The type of dental treatment, length of treatment (FAO-UFMG), and the child’s behavior (Frankl scale) were obtained from the clinical record. Gender and age (child), gender, kinship, and education level (responsible) were obtained through a questionnaire. The data were analyzed using Spearman correlation and Kruskal-Wallis tests.

Results: There was no significant correlation between children’s anxiety and the fear of parents/caregivers (r = -0.029; p = 0.820). Dental anxiety was higher in children undergoing extraction (mean = 3.17; SD = 2.639) than in children undergoing restorative/endodontic procedures (mean = 0.96; SD = 2.021; p = 0.013) or without treatment (mean = 0.30; SD = 0.483; p = 0.032). Children who had been undergoing treatment for 4-21 months presented higher anxiety when compared to children who had been undergoing treatment for more than 21 months (p = 0.045). No significant association was observed between dental anxiety and the child’s behavior (p = 0.221).

Conclusion: Children’s dental anxiety was not associated with their parents’/guardians’ dental fear. However, the need for more complex procedures and the time the child had been undergoing treatment at the clinic were associated with the presence of dental anxiety.


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How to Cite

Paiva, A. C. F. de, Bittencourt, J. M., Martins, L. P., Paiva, S. M., & Bendo, C. B. (2019). Self-reported dental anxiety by children attended in the Dental School of the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais:: associated factors and correlation with parents’ dental fear. Arquivos Em Odontologia, 55.




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