Dental Fear Related Parameters in Graphology. A Pilot Study
Objectives: Our previous study indicated influence of dental fear and anxiety on form/shape parameters of tooth drawings. The aim of this study was to investigate if there are similar influences of dental fear and anxiety on graphological parameters of written free associations about teeth. Methods: In this study 136 schoolchildren were investigated (n = 136 male: 54, female 82, age: 8-18 years, mean 12,92 ± 3,05 yrs.). Demographic data were collected and Hungarian versions of dental fear scales (DAS, DFS, Expectation) and anxiety scales (STAI-S, STAI-T) were administered. Subjects were also asked to write any thoughts that came into their mind about teeth on a sheet of paper. Graphological analysis included determination of upper- lower- left- right margins, spaces between lines and words, ratio of width/height of ovals, ratio of upper/lower zones, height of letters and their middle zone, and other ratios of the above including ratio of page width/left margin and ratio of space-between-words/oval width. Results: Mean values of the scales were: DAS: 10,64 ±3,83; DFS: 40,99 ±16,0; Expectation: 2,33 ±0,89; STAI-S: 37,33 ±11,27; STAI-T: 40,15 ±10,44. Gender influenced DAS, Expectation, STAI-S, STAI-T, left and right margins, height of letters and ratio of width/height of ovals (t-probe, p ≤ 0,05). Age influenced left and right margins, spaces between words and lines, height of letters and ratio of space-between-words/oval-width (ANOVA, p ≤ 0,05). Dental fear influenced upper and left margins (ANOVA, p ≤ 0,05). Expectation scores influenced ratio of upper/lower zones (ANOVA, p ≤ 0,05). Ratio of page-width/left margin influenced DAS scores; and upper margin value influenced Expectation scale scores (ANOVA, p ≤ 0,05). Conclusion: Our data may indicate that, there are some couplings between dental fear and certain parameters of graphology. This research was supported by TÁMOP-4.2.1/B-09/1/KMR-2010-0001.