Stress amongst dental students: a systematic review


Dr Abdullah M. Alzahem
PO Box 22490 (MC1243)
Riyadh 11426
Saudi Arabia
Tel: +96612520088 ex. 14103
Fax: +96612520088 ex. 14010


The present study was conducted to provide future researchers and dental educators with an overview of stress amongst undergraduate dental students reported in the literature. This overview is needed for the development of a new questionnaire measuring the level of stressors including students, staff and process of dental education. In addition, the review can be used to modify dental curricula to decrease such stress and produce better dentists. Our study consisted of a systematic review of 49 peer-reviewed articles published between 1966 till October 2008 in English, discussing different aspects of stress amongst undergraduate dental students. These aspects are demographic variables of stress, sources of stress, impact of stress, indicators of stress, instruments measuring stress level and management of stress. Major sources of reported stress were related to examinations, clinical requirements and dental supervisors. Studies suggest using signs and symptoms for early detection of stress and proper intervention.