Treating dental phobic patients in the Israeli Defense Force

Benjamin Peretz*, Joseph Katz, Itzhak Zilburg, Joshua Shemer

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The present study reports the results of the Israeli Defense Force clinic for dental phobic patients 14 months after its establishment. Thirty four soldiers (26 men, 8 women) attended the clinic, their ages ranged from 19 to 46 years. The patients were asked to complete Corah's Dental Anxiety Scale (DAS), prior to their first and each subsequent visit to the clinic. A full dental examination, including radiographs, was carried out on each patient, and the DMFT was recorded. The Tell, Show, Do, technique (21 patients), the use of nitrous oxide/oxygen sedation (5), behavioural relaxation techniques (4), and hypnosis (1) were used. Most patients required four sessions or more for treatment. The mean DAS total scores significantly decreased after each visit, as did the mean scores for each question. The mean DMFT, and the D component, were higher than the scores reported previously in Israeli soldiers, suggesting an association between dental phobia, avoidance of dental treatment and higher dental disease. Alleviating anxiety by rational explanation may not be sufficient in all phobic patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-112
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Dental Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1996


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