Citation Information :
Sanguida A, Suwetha R, Dharani MS, Ramya K. Children\'s Choice of Dentist\'s Attire, Color, and Type of Mouth Mask: A Cross-sectional Study in Puducherry, India. 2019; 9 (2):36-40.
Aims and objectives: The study was done to record the preferences of children with regard to dentist\'s appearance.
Settings and design: A cross-sectional descriptive study in the department of Pedodontics in a tertiary care hospital in Puducherry, India.
Materials and methods: The study sample comprised 385 children (4–15 years) who were asked about their concern as to who should perform their treatment (male/female dentist/anyone); the type of attire (white coat, formal, scrub, or cartoon); color of mask (white, blue, green, or pink); and the type of mask (plain, printed, cartoon, or magic) that they wish their dentist to wear.
Statistical analysis: Chi-square test was used to analyze the influence of age, gender, and history of dental visit on the preferences (p value set as 0.05).
Results: Girls preferred female dentists and boys preferred male dentists (p = 0.000), older children felt anyone could treat (p = 0.039). White coat was the most preferred attire (53%) irrespective of the gender (p = 0.016), and younger children preferred cartoon attire (56.1%; p = 0.000). Pink and blue masks and magic and cartoon masks were the most liked; middle-age group children liked magic masks (p = 0.000) and older children liked plain masks (p = 0.000).
Conclusion: With increasing age, white coat fear, preferences for specific gender of the dentist, and child-friendly type of masks diminish. As first dental visits mostly occur around the middle age, it is wise to consider making appropriate changes in the dentist\'s appearance.
Clinical significance: Child-friendly appearance of dentist would be more appropriate for children of younger age-group and could be considered for those visiting the dentist for the first time.
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