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Long-term effects on dental care behavior and dental health after treatments for dental fear.

Journal article
Authors Magnus Hakeberg
Ulf Berggren
Sven G. Carlsson
Hans-Göran Gröndahl
Published in Anesthesia progress
Volume 40
Issue 3
Pages 72-7
ISSN 0003-3006
Publication year 1993
Published at Institute of Odontology
Department of Psychology
Pages 72-7
Language en
Links www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...
Keywords Adult, Alveolar Bone Loss, pathology, Analysis of Variance, Behavior Therapy, Chi-Square Distribution, DMF Index, Dental Anxiety, therapy, Dental Care, psychology, utilization, Diazepam, therapeutic use, Female, Humans, Male, Outcome Assessment (Health Care), Patient Acceptance of Health Care, Preanesthetic Medication, Prospective Studies, Questionnaires, Statistics, Nonparametric
Subject categories Psychology

Abstract

Three different treatments for dental fear were tested in a long-term perspective study. Twenty-nine patients with severe dental anxiety and avoidance behavior were assigned to Behavioral Therapy (BT, n = 12), PRemedication with bensodiazepine (PR, n = 8) or dental treatment under General Anesthesia (GA, n = 9). Ten years after initial treatment the patients were reexamined. Changes in dental anxiety and dental care attendance were reported. Patients' dental health status was assessed by radiographic survey. Regular dental attendance was reported by 19 patients (65.5%), with a significantly better result for the BT group (91.6%) compared to the GA group (33.3%). Reported level of dental anxiety, as measured by the Dental Anxiety Scale, revealed a significant reduction during the 10-yr period except among GA patients and those reporting irregular dental attendance behavior. A rise in mood as assessed by the Mood Adjective Checklist was revealed in the total group, with a better effect in the BT and PR groups as well as in patients who reported regular dental attendance. A substantial general improvement in oral health was seen during the 10-yr period, especially among patients receiving regular dental care. Thus, for a majority of patients in this study, directed treatment for dental anxiety and avoidance behavior made it possible to maintain regular dental care behavior during a 10-yr period.

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