A cross‑sectional evaluation of children preference for dentist attire and syringe type in reduction of dental anxiety

Prashant Babaji, Pavni Chauhan, Vishwajiit Rampratap Churasia, Tamanpreet Kaur, Smita Singh, Melvin Augustine


Background: Fear of a dental child is most commonly associated with dentist attire and usage
of syringe. The objective of the study was to evaluate the preference of dentist’s attire and kind of
syringe (conventional or camouflage) among different age groups of children.
Materials and Methods: In this cross‑sectional study A total of 750 children aged 4–14 years
were included in the study. All the participants were subdivided into five major groups according to
their age, i.e., 4–5 years, 6–7 years, 8–9 years, 10–11 years, and 12–14 years. A set of six photographs
which included dentists in white‑colored apron, pink‑colored apron, green‑colored apron,
blue‑colored apron, and gown with cartoon character and dentists without apron (formal attire)
along with: (a) camouflage syringe and (b) conventional syringe were provided to every child and
was asked to give his/her preference looking at the six set of pictures. The preference of each child
was thus recorded. Children’s anxiety level during injections and dentist attire was assessed and
recorded using two anxiety scales, i.e. the Modified Child Dental Anxiety Scale faces version and
Facial Image Scale.SPSS statistical software and Chi‑square test were used. (P < 0.05).
Results: A majority of 35.3% participants in the 4–5‑years age group preferred aprons with cartoon
character, while 65.3% in the 12–14‑years age group selected white apron as the preferred choice.
Regarding preference of the syringe type, it was observed that 82% of the younger age preferred
camouflage syringe and 75% of the older age preferred conventional syringe. On comparison of both the
scales, no significant differences were found. About 82% children in the older age group were reported
to be nonanxious with white attire and only 14% were anxious with the conventional syringe type.
Conclusion: Younger children have a greater preference of colorful attire of dentist and camouflage
syringe over the conventional one when compared to older children.
Key Words: Age, attire, dental anxiety,dentist, syringe

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