Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Optimism and humour can help to combat dental fear

07.02.2012
Scientists at the Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have investigated the strategies used by people who suffer from dental fear to cope with dental treatment. Some of the most important factors in managing stress during a visit to the dentist include optimism on the part of the patient and an atmosphere of humour in the interaction with the dental staff.
In an international perspective, about 50% of the adult population suffer from some degree of dental fear, making it one of the most common fears. In its most serious form it can cause extreme stress and lead to people avoiding dental care altogether, thus dental fear turned into dental phobia.

Fiver percent have severe dental fear
Despite this, most people, and this include many of the approximate 5% of the population who suffer from severe dental fear, do go to the dentist regularly. In order to increase understanding of dental fear and its causes, scientists from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg have in two unique studies investigated the strategies people with dental fear use to cope with visiting the dentist, including dental treatment.

Five strategies to overcome
In one study, Jenny Bernson and her colleagues asked people suffering from dental fear to complete a questionnaire, and the researchers could identify five principal strategies used to overcome dental fear:
• Self-efficacy, using one’s own internal resources (for example: “I tell myself to be strong enough to stand it, despite my fear”)
• Self-distraction (for example: “I count to myself, sing to myself or try to play mental games with myself to keep my mind off the treatment”)
• Distancing (for example: “I think that the pain sensation feels like something else such as numbness”)
• Prayer (for example: “I pray that the treatment will soon be over”)
• Optimism (for example: “I try to think of the future, about what everything will be like after the treatment”).
“The study has shown that patients who adopt an optimistic mindset cope with dental treatment significantly better and they visit the dentist more regularly than patients who spend their time in prayer, despair or catastrophizing”, says Jenny Bernson.

Humour most important
The second study was based on interviews with patients suffering from dental fear, and the interviewed patients mentioned humour as one of the most important factors.
“Psychological barriers can be broken down by humour, both as a result of the patient and the dentist coming together more as equals, and as a result of humour reducing stress, increasing well-being and creating a pleasant atmosphere”, says Jenny Bernson.
The strategies that these two studies have identified will form the basis of a questionnaire that may be possible to use in the future when treating patients suffering from dental fear.
The article “Adaptive coping strategies among adults with dental fear. Further development of a new version of the Dental Coping Strategy Questionnaire” has been published in the scientific journal Acta Odontologica Scandinavica. 


The article “Making dental care possible – a mutual affair” has been published in the scientific journal European Journal of Oral Science.

For more information, please contact: Dr Jenny Bernson, LDS, doctoral student at the Department of Behavioural and Community Dentistry, Institute of Odontology, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg.
Tel: +46 31-786 38 69
E-mail: Jenny.bernson@odontologi.gu.se

Bibliographic data
Title: Adaptive coping strategies among adults with dental fear. Further development of a new version of the Dental Coping Strategy Questionnaire.
Journal: Acta Odontol Scand. 2011 Nov 30
Authors: Bernson JM, Elfström ML, Hakeberg M.

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21896054

Further reports about: Dental Analytics Gothenburg dental care dental treatment

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Candidate Ebola vaccine still effective when highly diluted, macaque study finds
21.10.2019 | NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

nachricht Autism spectrum disorder risk linked to insufficient placental steroid
21.10.2019 | Children's National Hospital

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Solving the mystery of quantum light in thin layers

A very special kind of light is emitted by tungsten diselenide layers. The reason for this has been unclear. Now an explanation has been found at TU Wien (Vienna)

It is an exotic phenomenon that nobody was able to explain for years: when energy is supplied to a thin layer of the material tungsten diselenide, it begins to...

Im Focus: An ultrafast glimpse of the photochemistry of the atmosphere

Researchers at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet (LMU) in Munich have explored the initial consequences of the interaction of light with molecules on the surface of nanoscopic aerosols.

The nanocosmos is constantly in motion. All natural processes are ultimately determined by the interplay between radiation and matter. Light strikes particles...

Im Focus: Shaping nanoparticles for improved quantum information technology

Particles that are mere nanometers in size are at the forefront of scientific research today. They come in many different shapes: rods, spheres, cubes, vesicles, S-shaped worms and even donut-like rings. What makes them worthy of scientific study is that, being so tiny, they exhibit quantum mechanical properties not possible with larger objects.

Researchers at the Center for Nanoscale Materials (CNM), a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science User Facility located at DOE's Argonne National...

Im Focus: Novel Material for Shipbuilding

A new research project at the TH Mittelhessen focusses on the development of a novel light weight design concept for leisure boats and yachts. Professor Stephan Marzi from the THM Institute of Mechanics and Materials collaborates with Krake Catamarane, which is a shipyard located in Apolda, Thuringia.

The project is set up in an international cooperation with Professor Anders Biel from Karlstad University in Sweden and the Swedish company Lamera from...

Im Focus: Controlling superconducting regions within an exotic metal

Superconductivity has fascinated scientists for many years since it offers the potential to revolutionize current technologies. Materials only become superconductors - meaning that electrons can travel in them with no resistance - at very low temperatures. These days, this unique zero resistance superconductivity is commonly found in a number of technologies, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).

Future technologies, however, will harness the total synchrony of electronic behavior in superconductors - a property called the phase. There is currently a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Symposium on Functional Materials for Electrolysis, Fuel Cells and Metal-Air Batteries

02.10.2019 | Event News

NEXUS 2020: Relationships Between Architecture and Mathematics

02.10.2019 | Event News

Optical Technologies: International Symposium „Future Optics“ in Hannover

19.09.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fraunhofer LBF and BAM develop faster procedure for flame-retardant plastics

21.10.2019 | Materials Sciences

For EVs with higher range: Take greater advantage of the potential offered by lightweight construction materials

21.10.2019 | Materials Sciences

Benefit and risk: Meta-analysis draws a heterogeneous picture of drug-coated balloon angioplasty

21.10.2019 | Medical Engineering

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>