Many kids are afraid of the dentist, often because of all of those needles. That’s why clinicians should strive to make pediatric visits as pain-free as possible. To help make that happen, one recent study compared the effectiveness of a 3-in-one injection comfort system (ICS) with a 10% lidocaine pump spray in reducing injection pain in children.
The researchers treated 58 children aged 8 to 12 at a university pediatric dental clinic. They used the Children’s Fear Survey Schedule-Dental Subscale to select nonanxious children to participate. Contralateral tooth pairs were treated in 2 separate visits with random use of ICS or lidocaine pump spray.
Pain perception levels were assessed with heart-rate changes, the Modified Behavioral Pain Scale (MBPS), and the Wong-Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale (WBFPRS). At the end of the second visit, the children’s preferences were noted. Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney U tests were performed to compare the results.
The researchers found no significant differences between the 2 groups in the MBPS and WBFPRS scores and mean heart rate changes (P > 0.05). However, 68% of the children preferred the ICS. Still, the researchers concluded that the ICS and 10% lidocaine pump spray presented the same efficacy in reducing injection pain.
The study, “Comparison of Topical 10 Percent Lidocaine and a Local Anesthetic System in Pediatric Dental Patients,” was published in the Journal of Dentistry for Children.