Relation of Dental Anxiety and Mindfulness: A Comparison of Pre-Health and Non Pre-Health Students
MetadataShow full item record
Understanding dental anxiety is important to gain insight on its origins and potential treatments. In this study, pre-health fields (medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, physician’s assistant, and veterinary) are compared to those in other fields of study to show what types of college students are more anxious about visiting the dentist. Mindfulness is defined as “the state of being attentive to and aware of what is taking place in the present” (Brown & Ryan, 2003). Multiple studies show that having higher levels of mindfulness correlates with being less anxious (Greeson, 2009). Overall, this study will aid dentists to further understand the types of patients with more anxiety and could show that altering one’s mindfulness could aid in overcoming that anxiety. To achieve these objectives, surveys administered include Corah’s Dental Anxiety Scale and Dental Concerns assessment measure, and the Mindfulness Attention Awareness Scale (MAAS). The dental anxiety and mindfulness of pre-health and non pre-health students will be compared, and to see how these traits relate to each other. Participants were 128 volunteers from an undergraduate psychology course and from medical-related clubs enrolled at a large southwestern university. The participants were asked to indicate career aspirations in medical fields and to respond to the Corah Dental Anxiety scale-4 (4 items), to Clarke’s and Rustvold’s Dental Concerns assessment measure (DCAS), and to the Mindfulness Attention Awareness scale (MAAS). The Corah Dental Anxiety Scale showed that pre-health students had less dental anxiety. Both the DCAS and the MAAS showed no significant difference. Convergent validity is found between the Corah Dental Anxiety Scale-4 and the DCAS. There was no significance difference between the dental anxiety scales and the MAAS.
Vaught, Diana T (2017). Relation of Dental Anxiety and Mindfulness: A Comparison of Pre-Health and Non Pre-Health Students. Undergraduate Research Scholars Program. Available electronically from