Let’s play about dental issues
Fear and anxiety towards dental issues and going to dentists affects a considerable proportion of children and adolescents (Gao et al., 2013). The prevalence of dental fear and anxiety (DFA) ranges around 5-20% in several countries (Klingberg & Broberg, 2007). The impacts of DFA besides behaviors of uncooperativeness in dental treatment, may also include physical (e.g., crying, screaming, and shivering) and psychological responses (eg, worry, upset, panic, helplessness, insecurity, resentment, and hatred) (Gao et al., 2013). According to the literature, DFA could be caused by both individual and external origins, in particular subjective (e.g., quantity and quality of previous dental visits), social (e.g., influence of parents or peers experiences or attitudes) and contextual factors (e.g., lack of clinical skills, dental settings and sounds, medical procedures) (Gao et al., 2013). Previous contacts with the different schools will be conducted to guarantee that all the legal and ethical procedures will be taken into account to collect the samples. The samples (approximately 50-100 participants) will be collected in the classroom settings of different Portuguese schools, will be composed by children (8 and 10 years) in the regular education levels (3rd and 4th grade). Each child will be asked to complete about 3/4 questionnaires individually. We expect that children mainly report lack of knowledge and several inconsistencies regarding to dental care, as well as attitudes globally negative.
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