A community study on the relationship of dental anxiety with oral health status and oral health-related quality of life

Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 2008 Aug;36(4):347-56. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0528.2007.00412.x.


Objective: To investigate the relationship of dental anxiety with oral health status and oral health-related quality of life (OHQoL) among dentate subjects living in Hong Kong.

Methods: One thousand Hong Kong residents who were aged 25-64 years and predominantly Chinese were asked to complete the Chinese short-forms of the Dental Anxiety Inventory (SDAxI) and Oral Health Impact Profile (OHIP-14S). Dental (DMFT index) and periodontal statuses [full-mouth clinical attachment level (CAL)] were also assessed.

Results: Ninety-six (9.6%; mean SDAxI, 9.6), 799 (79.9%; mean SDAxI, 15.0), and 105 (10.5%; mean SDAxI, 27.4) participants had low, average, and high dental anxiety, respectively. The mean DMFT/CAL scores of each SDAxI subgroup were 8.5/1.4, 9.3/1.9, and 9.8/3.6, respectively. The corresponding mean OHIP-14S scores for each SDAxI subgroup were 4.0, 8.1, and 13.2, respectively. Post hoc analysis, adjusted for possible confounding factors, revealed statistically significant differences in DMFT and CAL scores in subjects with low versus high level of SDAxI, and significant differences in OHIP-14S scores between all 3 SDAxI categories.

Conclusion: The trait disposition of dental anxiety may be a significant risk indicator of poor dental and periodontal status and is associated with a worse OHQoL.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • China / ethnology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • DMF Index
  • Dental Anxiety / epidemiology*
  • Dental Care / statistics & numerical data
  • Dental Caries / epidemiology
  • Dental Restoration, Permanent / statistics & numerical data
  • Educational Status
  • Female
  • Health Status*
  • Hong Kong / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Income / statistics & numerical data
  • Male
  • Marital Status / statistics & numerical data
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupations / statistics & numerical data
  • Oral Health*
  • Periodontal Attachment Loss / epidemiology
  • Periodontal Index
  • Quality of Life*
  • Smoking / epidemiology
  • Tooth Loss / epidemiology