International Journal of Clinical Pediatric Dentistry

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VOLUME 17 , ISSUE 3 ( March, 2024 ) > List of Articles


Assessment of Preappointment Parental Counseling on Dental Fear and Anxiety in Children in Pedodontic Dental Operatory: A Randomized Controlled Trial

R Ramesh, Savitha Sathyaprasad, S Nandan, Krishnamoorthy S Havaldar, Allwin Antony

Keywords : Anticipatory guidance, Case report, Counseling, Dental anxiety, Dental fear and anxiety

Citation Information : Ramesh R, Sathyaprasad S, Nandan S, Havaldar KS, Antony A. Assessment of Preappointment Parental Counseling on Dental Fear and Anxiety in Children in Pedodontic Dental Operatory: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Int J Clin Pediatr Dent 2024; 17 (3):346-351.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10005-2785

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 01-06-2024

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2024; The Author(s).


Background: Dental fear and anxiety are important issues in the practice of pediatric dentistry because they interfere with both the provision and receipt of dental care in children and adolescents. Behavior guidance is a dynamic part of child management. It starts from the preappointment level, where a negative attitude of the mother will be trained to become positive for improved child behavior in the pediatric dental clinic. The use of anticipatory guidance (AG) as parental counseling, where the information on what the parents should follow before their child's dental appointment was provided to the mothers. Aim: To assess the effect of preappointment parental counseling on dental fear and anxiety in children. Materials and methods: The study was a randomized, parallel-group, active-controlled trial, wherein the dyad of mother and child was randomly divided into two groups: (1) the test group and (2) the control group. At baseline, fear and anxiety assessment was done using fear and anxiety assessment scales and physiological parameters in both groups. Dental fear and anxiety were assessed using the children fear survey schedule dental subscale, Venham pictorial test in children and state-trait anxiety subscale in mothers. Parental counseling instructions were given verbally, in written format and by videos only in the test group on the same day of the initial appointment. The same subjects in both groups were checked for fear and anxiety scales and physiological parameters after 6 months from the first appointment. The effectiveness of parental counseling on dental fear and anxiety was correlated at the end of the study. Statistical analysis: The mean dental fear and anxiety scores between the test and control groups at baseline and at 6 months were compared using the Chi-squared test. Chi-squared test was used to compare the dental fear and anxiety in children and mothers in the study and control groups. Spearman's rank correlation test was used to assess the relationship between Children's Fear Survey Schedule-Dental Subscale (CFSS-DS), Venham Picture Test (VPT), state-trait anxiety inventory (STAI) scores, and clinical parameters in the study and control group of both populations. Results: The results showed that there was a significant improvement in the dental fear and anxiety levels in the dyads of mother and child postcounseling. The control group scores did not show any significant change. Conclusion: Preappointment parental counseling clarified and guided parents about the child's fear and anxiety and was effective in alleviating the dental fear and anxiety among parents and children attending pediatric dental clinics.

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