A study carried out by researchers in Spain has indicated that dental fear may run in families. The study suggests that children are more likely to be scared of going to the dentist if their parents have a fear of the dentist.
The study, which was conducted by a research team at the University of Madrid, analyzed the role of parents in determining fear levels in children, but it also examined the different roles of mothers and fathers. Children are more likely to suffer from fear of the dentist if their parents have dental fear, but the risk is highest if the father shows signs of fear. This is because children tend to pay more attention to their father’s emotional reactions.
The findings of the study have been published in the International Journal of Pediatric Dentistry and support previous studies that suggest that parental fear is linked to fear in children. Author of the study, America Lara Sacido, said that the study supports previous findings, but also determines the different roles played by both parents.
Sacido suggested that the results of the study could be used to try and prevent dental fear among children; the findings suggest that involving both mothers and fathers in campaigns against dental fear could be beneficial.
Sacido also added that parents have an important role to play when their child visits the dentist; they should try to appear relaxed and make out that going to the dentist is a positive experience, not anything to be worried about. If parents are relaxed, children will pick up on this and they are less likely to feel anxious or worried.
Source: Cosmetic Dentistry Guide