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The modified dental anxiety scale: UK general public population norms in 2008 with further psychometrics and effects of age

Humphris, G., Dyer, T. and Robinson, P. (2009) The modified dental anxiety scale: UK general public population norms in 2008 with further psychometrics and effects of age. BMC Oral Health, 9 (1). p. 20. ISSN 1472-6831

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Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The Modified Dental Anxiety Scale (MDAS) is a brief, self-complete questionnaire consisting of five questions and summed together to produce a total score ranging from 5 to 25. It has reasonable psychometric properties, low instrumental effects and can be integrated into everyday dental practice as a clinical aid and screen for dental anxiety. The objectives were to (i) produce confirmatory evidence of reliability and validity for the MDAS, (ii) provide up-to-date UK representative norms for the general public to enable clinicians to compare their patients' scores, (iii) to determine the nature of the relationship between dental anxiety and age.

METHODS:

Telephone survey of a representative quota sample of 1000 UK adults (>18 years of age) conducted between 7–21 April, 2008.

RESULTS:

Attrition of potential participants was high in the recruitment process, although bias was minimal. Estimated proportion of participants with high dental anxiety (cut-off score = 19) was 11.6%. Dental anxiety was four times greater in the youngest age group (18–39 yrs) compared to older participants (60+ yrs), controlling for sex, social class and self-reported dental visiting behaviour confirming previous developed-world reports.

CONCLUSION:

The scale's psychometrics is supportive for the routine assessment of patient dental anxiety to compare against a number of major demographic groups categorised by age and sex. Dental anxiety was high in younger compared to older people.

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © 2009 Humphris et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Institution: The University of Sheffield
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health (Sheffield) > School of Dentistry (Sheffield) > Department of Oral Health and Development (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Sheffield Import
Date Deposited: 02 Oct 2009 11:16
Last Modified: 08 Oct 2009 08:45
Published Version: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1472-6831/9/20
Status: Published
Publisher: Biomed Central
Identification Number: 10.1186/1472-6831-9-20
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/9672

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