Don’t be scared: Can distractions techniques relax kids at dentist?

Randomised controlled trials have tested whether dental anxiety in children and adolescents can be reduced using toys, audio and audiovisual techniques and a range of other measures.

In a study published in the International Journal of Paediatric Dentistry, Brazilian researchers sought to determine via systematic review whether dental anxiety, estimated to affect anywhere between 5 and 61 percent of children worldwide, could be ameliorated using various to distract young patients from the task at hand.

Children and adolescents under 18 were provided with a number of dental treatments, reports the Dental Tribune, including “dental examination, oral prophylaxis, local anesthesia, dental restoration, endodontic treatment and extraction”, all while being distracted with toys, audiovisual techniques, instrument camouflage, biofeedback, and a dental operating microscope.

Results were not conclusive with researchers concluding that “the very low certainty of evidence” mean that “more robust and well-executed RCTs are needed.

For the full story and study, go to “Review shows distraction techniques may reduce dental anxiety”

/ADA Public Release. View in full here.