Dental fear of Finnish children in the light of different measures of dental fear.Acta Odontol Scand. 2005 Aug; 63(4):239-44.AO
The aims were: (1) to examine the construct and reliability of the modified Dental Subscale of the Children's Fear Survey Schedule (CFSS-DS) among children of different ages and (2) to compare the correlations between fear measured with the modified CFSS-DS, the "peak value for dental fear" (PV), and "fear of dental treatment in general" (GF).
The study sample consisted of 302, 299, 314, and 297 children aged 6, 9, 12, and 15 years, respectively. Each child received a questionnaire to be filled out at home. An explorative factor analysis with varimax rotation was performed for eight items taken from the CFSS-DS and questions on fear of pain and suction used in the mouth. For further age-specific analyses, mean values were calculated for the sum of items that loaded >0.5 on each factor. The correlations between these values and PV and GF were studied.
The questionnaire was reliable. Two factors were revealed for each age: "treatment of dental decay" (TDD), which included fears related to invasive treatment, and "attending the dentist" (AD), which included fears related to dental visits in general. TDD explained over 50% of the variance, except among 9-year-olds. TDD mean values were higher among older children than among younger ones and correlated more strongly with PV than with GF. AD mean values were higher among younger children than among older ones and correlated more strongly with GF than with PV.
The factor structures were fairly similar but the correlations between fear measures differed among children of different ages.