Few studies have examined psychological stress and personal anxiety in children exhibiting cooperative behaviour
during dental treatment. We assessed psychological stress and personal anxiety during dental treatment in cooperative children, and
investigated the influence of various factors.
We measured pre- and post-treatment salivary alpha
amylase (sAA) levels of 28 children aged 8-13 years and their parents. Children completed the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for
Children (STAIC); their parents completed the STAI. The IA group included children whose sAA levels increased >10,
whereas the DA group included children whose sAA levels decreased >10. We used regression models to calculate the
power of variables to predict children's psychological stress.
The mean anxiety trait score in the IA group was significantly
higher than in the DA group (t-test, P = 0.021). For children with higher STAIC-Trait scores, the OR for increasing sAA was 1.16
(95 CI [1.02-1.31]). Parental or treatment factors did not significantly contribute to incremental sAA levels in children.
Well-behaved children with high anxiety traits may experience high stress levels during dental treatment; however,
parental and dental treatment factors may not affect psychological stress in these children.
Vol.14 – n.4/2013
Harvard: K. Aoyagi-Naka, A. Koda, T. Kawakami, H. Karibe (2013) "Factors affecting psychological stress in children who cooperate with dental treatment: a pilot study", European Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, 14(4), pp263-268. doi:
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