J Dent Anesth Pain Med.  2019 Dec;19(6):361-367. 10.17245/jdapm.2019.19.6.361.

Verification of the Korean Version of the Dental Fear Survey

  • 1Red Dental Research Institute, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Dental Hygiene, Daejeon Institute of Science and Technology, Daejeon, Korea.
  • 3Department of Pediatric Dentistry and Wonkwang Dental Research Institute, College of Dentistry, Wonkwang University, Daejeon, Korea. 9543sue@hanmail.net
  • 4Research Institute of Bone Regeneration, Wonkwang University, Daejeon, Korea.


Although studies on dental fear in relation to sex and age have been conducted, there have been few nationwide studies particularly on the youth sector. In addition, no validity and reliability verifications have been implemented for new research groups on the Korean version of the Dental Fear Survey (K-DFS). Therefore, this study aimed to apply the K-DFS developed in a previous study on Korean youth to draw conclusions on dental fear among the youth.
This study used the K-DFS, a Korean translation of Kleinknecht's Dental Fear Survey for elementary school, middle school, and high school students. This study selected 2,161 young people of various ages as participants and increased the validity of the research results by expanding nationwide the scope of the study area.
Differences in fear levels according to sex were higher in boys fear behavior scores than in girls' regarding dental treatment (P < 0.05). Students with dental fear had higher scores on items associated with dental treatment and fear of dental stimuli compared with students without dental fear (P < 0.05). Differences were observed among the three groups (P < 0.05). However, the results of logistic regression analysis showed no statistically significant differences for dental visits based on sex, grade, and other subcomponents (P > 0.05).
By verifying the validity of the newly developed K-DFS, this research confirmed its utility as a dental fear questionnaire. Therefore, there can be no objection that the grounds for criticism have been established according to conventional wisdom. In the future, however, developing and studying the limits of K-DFS that overcome the factors of dental fear, especially pain, will help reduce dental fear in adolescents.


Dental Anxiety; Fear; Surveys and Questionnaires
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