Music, audio-visuals or digital actuality for dental anxiousness?


Dental anxiousness is comparatively frequent with research indicating that simply over a 3rd of the inhabitants (36%) have suffered and a variety of various administration approaches have been utilized in its administration (Dental Elf – 12th Aug 2022). Numerous research have in contrast audio-visuals, music, or digital actuality suggesting a profit though no direct comparisons of those approaches have been undertaken.

The purpose of this overview was to match the effectiveness of enjoyable music, audio-visuals (AV), and digital actuality (VR) in lowering dental anxiousness related to tooth extraction.


The overview protocol was registered with PROSPERO. Searches had been carried out within the PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library, and Scopus databases with no limits on date or language. Randomised managed trials (RCTs) in youngsters or adults requiring tooth extraction the place music AV or VR tools was in comparison with commonplace care/steering procedures, counter-stimulation, tell-show-do, or no particular rest therapy had been thought-about. Two reviewers independently searched and chosen research extracted information and assessed danger of bias utilizing the Cochrane RoB2 software. The pooled commonplace imply distinction (SMD) and 95% confidence interval (CI) of tension scale scores had been analysed utilizing Bayesian community meta-analysis (NMA). The community rating of the interventions was decided based mostly on the surfaces underneath the cumulative rating curve (SUCRA)


  • 11 RCTs revealed between 2007 and 2023 had been included.
  • 8 anxiousness scales had been used,the Spielberger State-Trait Anxiousness Stock subscale for trait anxiousness (STAI-T), the Spielberger State-Trait Anxiousness Stock subscale for state anxiousness (STAI-S), the modified youngster concern survey schedule dental subscale (CFSS-DS), the visible analog scale (VAS), the modified dental anxiousness scale (MDAS), the Corah dental anxiousness scale (CDAS), the facial picture scale (FIS), and Venham’s Image Take a look at (VPT).
  • 4 research had been thought-about to be at low danger of bias, one at excessive danger and 6 had some issues.
  • The NMA confirmed that music and VR had been related to a discount in dental anxiousness in comparison with management (see desk under).
In comparison with management No. of research Imply distinction (95percentCl)
Music 10 -0.64(-1.04 to -0.25)
Audio-visual 4 -0.34 (-0.97 to 0.33)
Digital actuality 5 -0.54 (-1.08 to -0.02)
  • The SUCRA findings confirmed the next efficacy rating: Music > VR > audio-visuals>management.


The authors concluded: –

using enjoyable music could also be prioritized as a non-pharmacological intervention to scale back dental anxiousness related to tooth extraction in each adults and youngsters. This conclusion might be worthwhile for dentists or sufferers when choosing interventions to alleviate dental anxiousness. Nonetheless, it is very important be aware that the understanding of the proof supporting this conclusion is barely reasonable because of the pattern dimension. To boost the understanding of this NMA, additional large-scale research with direct comparisons and 3-arm designed RCTs are required.


Beforehand we checked out a overview of administration methods for grownup sufferers with dental anxiousness   (Dental Elf – 12th Aug 2022) and music and digital actuality interventions had been nicely represented. This new overview aimed to match music, AV and VR interventions for sufferers present process dental extractions.  4 main databases had been searched with no restrictions with 11 RCTs assembly the reviewers’ standards. The 11 research used 8 totally different anxiousness scales with the NMA indicating that music had the best likelihood of being efficient adopted by VR. Nonetheless, the variety of out there research is proscribed and the vary of tension scales and musical and visible interventions used within the varied research implies that the findings needs to be interpreted cautiously.


Main Paper

Hao T, Pang J, Liu Q, Xin P. A scientific overview and community meta-analysis of digital actuality, audiovisuals and music interventions for lowering dental anxiousness associated to tooth extraction. BMC Oral Well being. 2023 Sep 22;23(1):684. doi: 10.1186/s12903-023-03407-y. PMID: 37735362; PMCID: PMC10515077.

Evaluation protocol in PROSPERO

Different references

Dental Elf – 12th Aug 2022

Grownup dental anxiousness – administration methods

Dental Elf – 10th Jun 2019

Distraction strategies for managing dental anxiousness in youngsters and adolescents

Dental Elf – Dental Anxiousness blogs

Image Credit

Photograph by Nik on Unsplash



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