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A comparative study on anxiety towards COVID-19 among dental postgraduate trainees of different specialties in Karachi, Pakistan

Dr. Nayab Raza,Dr. Syed Yawar Ali Abidi,Dr. Samira Adnan,Dr. Maham Muneeb Lone,Dr. Isma Sajjad,Dr. Jamshed Ahmed.


OBJECTIVE: Dental health care workers around the globe are potentially vulnerable of contracting COVID-19 disease. Many studies have investigated the presence of anxiety and mental health issues amongst the healthcare workers especially the dental professionals during COVID-19. This study aimed to compare the anxiety of dental postgraduate trainees of different specialties towards COVID-19.
METHOD: An online questionnaire comprising 11 items was forwarded to dental postgraduate (PGs) trainees in Karachi for specialties of Operative Dentistry, Oral Surgery, Prosthodontics, Orthodontics. Responses to 9 questions were recorded on a 3-point Likert scale, where agree indicated anxiety and disagree showed no anxiety. Questions also inquired PGs opinion about the specialty and dental procedures which they perceived to have the greatest risk of infection.
RESULTS: Almost 62% of responses by the participants affirmed their anxiety as demonstrated by their reply to various questions based on Likert scale. Gender (p =0.012) and marital status (p= 0.036) revealed significant difference with respect to closure of dental OPD in face of second wave of COVID-19 and its treatment cost, respectively. Treatments like ultrasonic scaling (84%) and endodontics (79%) while training in specialty of Endodontics (88%) and Oral Surgery (69%) were considered having greatest risk to contract COVID-19.
CONCLUSION: Anxiety was expressed among trainees of all dental specialties, with ultrasonic scaling and endodontic treatment considered highest risk for contracting COVID-19 and training in specialties of endodontic and oral surgery regarded as being most risky.

Key words: Anxiety, COVID-19, Operative Dentistry, Oral Surgery, Orthodontics, Prosthodontics.

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