Psychology and dentistry: Potential benefits from a health care liaison

Ronald A. Kleinknecht, Robert K. Klepac, Douglas A. Bernstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The results of expanding research in psychological aspects of dentistry have appeared mainly in dental journals. The present article calls these developments to the attention of the psychological community and suggests areas in which psychologists from various specialties can contribute to them. It is noted that the "drill 'em, fill 'em, bill 'em" philosophy of some dental practitioners is gradually giving way to increased concerns over the impact on dental health of patients' fears, motives, expectations, and uncertainties (e.g., the most skilled practitioner can do nothing for the patient whose fears keep him/her from scheduling an appointment). The Myofascial Pain-Dysfunction Syndrome is discussed as one facet of dentistry other than fear that holds challenges for clinical psychology. It is suggested that the growing relationship between psychology and dentistry may have a significant effect on both disciplines. (55 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)585-592
Number of pages8
JournalProfessional Psychology: Research and Practice
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1 1976


  • dentistry, potential benefits from health care liaison
  • psychology &

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


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