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Oral health locus of control in a Swedish adolescent population

Journal article
Authors Anna-Lena Östberg
Kajsa H. Abrahamsson
Published in Acta Odontologica Scandinavica
Volume 71
Issue 1
Pages 249-55
ISSN 0001-6357
Publication year 2013
Published at Institute of Odontology
Pages 249-55
Language en
Keywords locus of control, oral health, psychometrics, Swedish, validation
Subject categories Other Medical Sciences


Abstract OBJECTIVE: The aim was to test and evaluate the psychometric properties of the Oral Health Locus of Control (OHLoC) instrument and its relation to dental anxiety, self-efficacy and self-perceived oral health among Swedish adolescents. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A random sample of 758 (63% of 1208 invited) 19-year-old individuals in three residential areas in western Sweden (two rural, one urban) answered a set of questionnaires prior to a dental examination. RESULTS: The face and content validity of the OHLoC was deemed good in pilot interviews with individuals of the target age. Explorative factor analysis verified the dimensions of the OHLoC sub-scales (internal, external, chance locus of control) with loadings from 0.503 - 0.812, explaining 54.6% of the variance. Construct validity was confirmed in relation to two other psychometric scales, on dental anxiety (DAS) and on general self-efficacy (GSE), with correlations in the expected directions. In multivariate logistic regression analyses, the internal sub-scale displayed the most consistent statistically significant associations with self-perceived oral health, also when accounting for gender, demography and health behavior. There were no significant differences between genders on the OHLoC, but females scored statistically significantly higher on the DAS (p = 0.005) and lower on the GSE (p = 0.021) than males. CONCLUSIONS: The Swedish version of the OHLoC appears to have acceptable psychometric properties for use in an adolescent population.

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