Characteristics of clients seeking therapy for the reduction of dental avoidance: Reactions to pain

Robert K. Klepac, John Dowling, Gregory Hauge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

66 Scopus citations


Avoidant dental patients responding to advertisements offering behavioral treatment for avoidance of dentistry were compared with patients particularly low in dental fear along a number of dimensions. Factors which discriminated between the two groups were: gender; the neuroticism scale of the Eysenck Personality Inventory; several self-reported reactions to past dental treatment; tolerance for dental (but not non-dental) pain; state anxiety during pain testing; and a measure of "efficacy". This last finding suggested that avoidant subjects saw themselves as less able to tolerate electrical tooth pulp stimulation and dental treatment than did their fearless counterparts, but no different in ability to tolerate pain irrelevant to dentistry (shock to the forearm).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)293-300
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1982


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

Cite this