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Dental Anxiety in Young Dental Patients

The purpose of this study is to explore ways to reduce anxiety in young dental patients. Having dental anxiety in childhood can lead to avoiding dental care in adulthood. This can lead to reduced quality of life and many dental problems, such as cavities, extractions, infections and emergent care.

Age & Gender

  • 4 years ~ 8 years
  • Male, Female, Gender Inclusive

Visit Availability

  • Standard business hours (M-F, 8-5)
  • Extended hours (M-F, early morning or evening)


North Carolina (Statewide)

What will be asked of you

Participation includes a 30-45 minute dental visit at UNC School of Dentistry. At the visit, we will do an exam, cleaning, measure your child's heart rate and sweat response, collect saliva samples, and ask some survey questions.


$30 Visa gift card, oral exam, cleaning, report of oral exam findings

In-person visits:
Total length of participation:
30-45 minutes

Looking for Healthy Volunteers

Requirements for healthy volunteers are different than for those with a specific condition. If you are interested in becoming a healthy volunteer for this study, use the below categories to determine if you are able to participate.

Able to participate:

  • your child is 4-8 years old
  • your child has not received a dental cleaning or oral exam in the past 3 months
  • your child has stable physical health
  • you/your child are able to comprehend and follow the requirements of the study

Not eligible if:

  • you/your child are a non-English or non-Spanish speaker
  • your child is suffering from current dental pain
  • you/your child has allergies to dogs or to oral hygiene products (toothpastes, mouth rinses)
  • you/your child are afraid of dogs or had a prior negative experience with dogs
  • you/your child have a developmental/cognitive disability

Contact the Team

Visit Location

Contact & Visit Location

Primary Contact

Primary Visit Location

Adams School of Dentistry (UNC-Chapel Hill)
385 S Columbia St, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, USA

Additional Study Information

Principal Investigator

Laura Jacox
Adams School of Dentistry Oral and Craniofacial Health Sciences

Study Type

Clinical or Medical

Study Topics

Child and Teen Health
Healthy Volunteer or General Population
Mental and Emotional Health
Mouth and Teeth
Parents of Children

IRB Number


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