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ARTICLE
Year : 2011  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 18  |  Page : 177-181

Prevalence of dental fear in children belonging to low socio-economic status - A cross sectional study in Bengaluru City


1 Reader, Dept. of Public Health Dentistry, M. R. Ambedkar Dental College, Bengaluru, India
2 Senior Lecturer, Dept. of Public Health Dentistry, M. R. Ambedkar Dental College, Bengaluru, India
3 Professor and Head, Dept. of Public Health Dentistry, M. R. Ambedkar Dental College, Bengaluru, India
4 Lecturer, Dept. of Public Health Dentistry, M. R. Ambedkar Dental College, Bengaluru, India

Correspondence Address:
Archana Krishnamurthy
Reader, Dept. of Public Health Dentistry, M. R. Ambedkar Dental College, Bengaluru
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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Despite advances in both pain control and patient management, dental fear remains a serious issue for patients and dental clinicians. Associations have been found between dental fear and less frequent dental visiting, poorer oral health, and greater functional impairment with the subject ending up as a dental cripple. The aim of the study was to determine the prevalence of dental fear reported by a group of 12 - 15 year old high school children belonging to low socioeconomic status (SES) and to explore the relationship between dental fear and age and gender. Using Prasad's social classification, only children of low SES were included. A group of 1452 children with a mean age of 13.56 1.04 years from 8 government high schools in Bangalore city took part in this study. The dental fear was assessed using the single item Dental Anxiety Question. The prevalence of high dental fear was found to be 23.6%. Though dental fear did not show any correlation with age, it was significantly higher among females when compared to males. Given the high prevalence of dental fear in children of low SES, there are clear clinical implications for oral health professionals in terms of both fear identification and treatment.


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