Dental treatment can cause symptoms such as fear and anxiety. Audiovisual distraction (AD) is a simple and low-cost technique that does not interfere with the dental treatment.
The aim of this study was to perform a systematic review and meta-analysis to evaluate the effectiveness of AD methods for children who experience anxiety during dental treatment.
Materials and Methods:
Two reviewers performed a database search of the studies published between January 1950 and November 2015. The inclusion criteria were papers published in the English language, child samples aged 4-10 years, and use of AD. All potentially relevant studies were identified by the title and the abstract. After the full-text analysis of the potentially relevant studies, the selected studies were included in the systematic review. A meta-analysis calculation was performed for the overall data and the subgroup data.
Thirty-seven nonduplicated studies were found. However, after reviewing the articles, only five were included. A high variability was observed among the papers. Tools and questionnaires used to measure the anxiety during dental treatment presented the most common variability. Meta-analysis demonstrated a lower anxiety level in AD method groups when Modified Child Dental Anxiety Scale was used (P = 0.02) with a mean difference (confidence interval) of -8.72 (-16.7, -1.38).
The AD method is effective for controlling dental anxiety in children.
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