Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2440/52233
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Type: Journal article
Title: A preliminary investigation of the relationship of dental fear to other specific fears, general fearfulness, disgust sensitivity and harm sensitivity
Author: Armfield, J.
Citation: Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 2008; 36(2):128-136
Publisher: Blackwell Munksgaard
Issue Date: 2008
ISSN: 0301-5661
1600-0528
Statement of
Responsibility: 
Jason M. Armfield
Abstract: OBJECTIVES: People with dental fear often suffer from other psychological disorders, as well as from a number of other specific fears. Fear of going to the dentist may be associated not only with general fearfulness, but also with underlying personality dispositions. This exploratory study, therefore, investigated the associations between dental fear and 67 other specific fears, general fearfulness, disgust sensitivity and harm sensitivity. METHODS: Participants were 88 Australian adults who were administered the Fear Survey Schedule III (FSS-III), the Harm Sensitivity Index and the Disgust Sensitivity Index. Principle axis factor analysis with Promax rotation was used to examine how dental fear related to other specific fears as measured with the FSS-III. RESULTS: Dental fear was significantly correlated with most of the other specific fears, with factor analysis indicating that it tended to load more with fears related to lack of control rather than with what have often been classed as 'medical' fears. Significant associations were found between dental fear and the personality dispositions of general fearfulness, harm sensitivity and disgust sensitivity, although these associations were not linear. CONCLUSIONS: Findings reveal extensive co-occurrence of other specific fears with dental fear, while the associations of dental fear with personality traits suggest enduring aspects to dental fear which may translate into difficulties in fear alleviation. Dental fear was more related to a diverse range of fears relating to a loss of control than to medical-specific fears.
Keywords: Humans; Questionnaires; Harm Reduction; Dental Anxiety; Internal-External Control; Phobic Disorders; Personality Disorders; Adolescent; Adult; Middle Aged; Female; Male
Description: The definitive version may be found at www.wiley.com
RMID: 0020080276
DOI: 10.1111/j.1600-0528.2007.00379.x
Appears in Collections:Dentistry publications

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