The prevalence of dental fear and avoidance: expanded adult and recent adolescent surveys.

Robert Joseph Gatchel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

66 Scopus citations


This study evaluates the current incidence of dental fear and avoidance in a general population of adults and adolescents. Two adult samples were collected. The consisted of 1,882 individuals who were contacted randomly by telephone; the second sample consisted of 357 junior high and secondary school teachers who received a questionnaire. The adolescent sample, also surveyed by questionnaire, consisted of 641 junior high school students and 801 secondary school students. Results indicate that 11.2% to 12.3% of the adults reported high dental fear; 17.5% to 18.2% reported moderate dental fear. Similar rates were found among the adolescents. A major new finding was that more adolescents than adults had not seen a dentist in a year or more.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)591-593
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of the American Dental Association (1939)
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1989


Cite this