1406 Factor Analysis of the Brazilian Version of Dental Fear Survey  

Saturday, March 24, 2012: 9:45 a.m. - 11 a.m.
Presentation Type: Poster Session
M.A. OLIVEIRA1, M.P. VALE2, S.M. PAIVA2, C.B. BENDO2, P.A.D. OLIVEIRA3, and J. SERRA-NEGRA4, 1Odontopediatria e Ortodontia, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 2Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Orthodontics, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 3UFMG, Belo Horizonte, Brazil, 4Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte-Minas Gerais, Brazil
Objective:  Dental Fear Survey (DFS) was previously validated in Brazil with psychology undergraduates. This study aims to evaluate the Brazilian version of DFS and classify dental fear among undergraduates from Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais (UFMG), Belo Horizonte, Brazil.

Method:  a census type cross-sectional study was developed with undergraduates in dentistry, psychology and mathematics. Following authorization from the Human Research Ethics Committee of  UFMG, the undergraduates responded the DFS in the classroom. DFS is a 20-item Likert-type questionnaire that uses representative five-point ratings. SPSS for Windows, version 17.0 was used for the statistical analysis with 5% significance level. A total of 1,256 students participated in the study, with an average age of 22.3 years (SD = 5.1), 37.1% men and 62.9% women.  Factor analysis and cluster analysis were made.

Result:  Factor analysis led to three structural factors. The first factor related to fear of specific dental stimuli (items 14-20) accounted for 25.96% of the scale’s total variance. The second factor related to patterns of dental avoidance and anticipatory anxiety (items 1, 2 and 8-13) accounted for 21.20% of the scale’s total variance. The third factor was concerned the physiologic arousal felt during dental treatment (items 3-7) accounted for 19.06% of the scale’s total variance. Cronbach's alpha ranged from 0.86 to 0.93, indicating internal reliability consistency. The cluster analysis produced three groups of students, categorized by DFS scores in low fear (56.4%), moderate fear (32.9%) and high fear (10.7%). The variance analysis showed a statistically significant difference among the three groups of fear (p <0.001).

Conclusion: Factors analysis of DFS disclosed three stable and reliable factors among the undergraduates from the three different fields of study.

This abstract is based on research that was funded entirely or partially by an outside source: CAPES, CNPq, FAPEMIG

Keywords: Behavioral science and dental fear