Emotional intelligence subscales: are they correlated with child anxiety and behavior in the dental setting?J Clin Pediatr Dent. 2013 Fall; 38(1):61-6.JC
The present study aimed at evaluating the correlation between emotional intelligence subscales and childs anxiety and behavior in the dental setting.
The study included 123 children aged 7-12 years, who were scheduled to attend two consecutive sessions. In the first session, the Bar-On Emotional Quotient Inventory: Youth Version (Bar-on EQ-I: YV) was administered to participants. The anxiety and behavior in children was evaluated during similar dental procedures in the second session using the Clinical Anxiety Rating Scale and the Frankl scale, respectively.
23 children were eliminated from the study, leaving 100 participants (47 boys and 53 girls) with a mean age of 9.32 +/- 1.59 years for study. There were statistically significant positive correlations between Frankl score and EQ total score (p < 0.001), interpersonal scale (p < 0.001), intrapersonal scale (p < 0.001), stress management (p = 0.03) and adaptability scale (p < 0.001). Significant negative correlations were found between anxiety score and, EQ total score (p < 0.001), interpersonal scale (p < 0.001), intrapersonal scale (p < 0.001), and adaptability scale (p < 0.001). Anxiety and stress management were not correlated (p = 0.16). Total EQ and EQ subscales can predict significance variance of Frankl score (p < 0.05) and anxiety score (p < 0.05) without confounding effect of age and sex (p > 0.05).
The results provide evidence that children with higher total EQ as well as higher scores of intrapersonal, interpersonal, adaptability and stress management scales can generally be flexible and effective in coping in the dental setting. Higher score in stress management subscale seems to be related to better control over affective information including anxiety compared with other subscales in stressful situations. Overall, they behave and cooperate better than children with lower scores.