Objectives: This study aimed to evaluate the associations between psychological factors and the presence of deleterious oral habits in children and adolescents.
Study design: 147 students aged 8 to 14-years-old were divided in two groups concerning the presence and absence of DOH Habit group (HG) and Habit free group (HFG). Participants were asked about the presence of DOH using the domain III (Oral Habits) of the Nordic Orofacial Test-Screening (NOT-S). Symptoms of anxiety and depression were evaluated using the Brazilian Portuguese versions of the Revised Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale (RCMAS) and the Children's Depression Inventory (CDI), respectively. Saliva was collected 30 min after waking and at night to determine the diurnal decline in salivary cortisol (DDSC). Data were analyzed using the Chi-squared, Mann-Whitney, Spearman's correlation and logistic regression.
Results: The prevalence of DOH was higher in females than males (65.1 vs 34.9; p < 0.05). The most frequent DOH was nail biting (58.7%). HG presented more depressive symptoms than HFG (p < 0.05). There was positive correlation between salivary cortisol levels and age (p < 0.01). Logistic regression analysis found association between symptoms of anxiety and the presence of DOH (OR = 2.35; p < 0.05).
Conclusions: In conclusion, children and adolescents with DOH presented more symptoms of depression than their counterparts. Moreover, they were more likely to report symptoms of anxiety.