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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2018  |  Volume : 3  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 33-36

Prevalence of dental anxiety among undergraduate students at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Tanzania


1 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
2 Department of Restorative Dentistry, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Karpal Singh Sohal
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, PO Box: 65014, Dar es Salaam
Tanzania
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/ijosr.ijosr_1_19

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Background: Dental anxiety is one of the most common phobias and among the major problems in dentistry. Students in medical field are future health professionals who are supposed to provide a positive attitude toward dentistry to the society. However, if they have dental anxiety, their attitude toward dentistry is likely to be negative. Aim: The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of dental anxiety among undergraduate students at Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS). Methodology: This was a descriptive cross-sectional study involving undergraduate students at MUHAS. Data were collected using self-administered Modified Dental Anxiety Scale questionnaire with additional questions on demographic characteristics and a list of fear-provoking factors. Data were entered and analyzed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences computer software version 19.0 (2010; IBM Corp., Armonk, NY, USA). Chi-square test was used to assess the association between variables, and the significance level was set at P < 0.05. Results: This study enrolled 252 undergraduate students with an age range of 18–39 years. More than half (54.4%) were males. Most (55.2%) of the participants had some degree of dental anxiety. The prevalence of dental anxiety was relatively higher in females (70.4%). The association between dental anxiety and the degree courses was significant. Dental students had the lowest dental anxiety level compared to nondental students. Conclusion: The prevalence of dental anxiety among undergraduate students at MUHAS was high. Dental anxiety was significantly higher in female students. There was a significant relationship between dental anxiety and the degree course of the participants.


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