Article Data

  • Views 993
  • Dowloads 202

Original Research

Open Access

Role of Colors in Pediatric Dental Practices

  • Ketan Bubna1
  • Sapna Hegde1,*,
  • Dinesh Rao1

1Department of Paediatric Dentistry, Pacific Dental College and Hospital, Udaipur, India

DOI: 10.17796/1053-4628-41.3.193 Vol.41,Issue 3,May 2017 pp.193-198

Published: 01 May 2017

*Corresponding Author(s): Sapna Hegde E-mail:


Objective: This study evaluated the association between colors and emotions in a pediatric dental population. Study design: In this randomized cross-sectional study, 100 children aged 6–12 years were categorized as non-anxious and anxious using Corah's Dental Anxiety Scale–Revised. They were then instructed to color two cartoon faces, one depicting happiness emotion and the other, sadness, with any of six colors provided. Data obtained were statistically analyzed. Results: The mean Corah's Dental Anxiety scores were 11.7 and 4.97 for the anxious and non-anxious children, respectively. Both groups expressed the highest preference for the color yellow for happiness emotion. No significant differences were observed between color choices in either group (p>0.05), except for black which was not chosen by any child for happiness (p<0.005). Children in both groups significantly preferred red for sadness emotion. No significant differences were observed between color choices in the anxious group (p>0.05). In the non-anxious group, yellow assumed significant preference over green (p<0.05). Conclusions: Yellow was the most-preferred color and black, the least-preferred, for happiness emotion, whereas, for sadness emotion, red and green were the most- and least-preferred colors, respectively. Color preference was not affected by the presence of dental anxiety.


child-friendly colors, dental environment, colors and dental attitude

Cite and Share

Ketan Bubna,Sapna Hegde,Dinesh Rao. Role of Colors in Pediatric Dental Practices. Journal of Clinical Pediatric Dentistry. 2017. 41(3);193-198.


1. Gordon D, Heimberg RG, Tellez M, Ismail AI. A critical review of approaches to the treatment of dental anxiety in adults. J Anxiety Disord; 27(4):365-78. 2013.

2. Klingberg G, Broberg AG. Dental fear/anxiety and dental behaviour management problems in children and adolescents: a review of prev-alence and concomitant psychological factors. Int J Paediatr Dent; 17(6):391-406. 2007.

3. Krikken JB, Ten Cate JM, Veerkamp JS. Child dental fear and general emotional problems: a pilot study. Eur Arch Paediatr Dent; 11(6):283-6. 2010.

4. Park JG. Color perception in pediatric patient room design: Healthy chil-dren vs. pediatric patients. Higher Education Research and Development; 2:6-28. 2009.

5. Hemphill M. A note on adults color-emotion associations. J Gen Psychol; 157:275-81. 1996.

6. Abbasi MA, Talaei A, Talaei A, Rezaei A. The use of appropriate colors in the design of children’s room: a short review. Int J of Pediatr; 10(2):1-4. 2014.

7. Ulrich RS. Nature verses urban scenes; some psycho-physiological effects. Environt Behavior; 13:523-56. 1981.

8. Saito M. Comparative studies on color preference in Japan and other Asian regions, with special emphasis on the preference for white. Color Research and Application; 21(1):35- 49. 1996.

9. Corah NL. Assessment of a dental anxiety scale. J Am Dent Assoc; 97(5):816-9. 1978.

10. Carruthers HR, Morris J, Tarrier N, Whorwell P. The Manchester color wheel: Development of a novel way of identifying color choice and its validation in healthy, anxious and depressed individuals. BMC Med Res Methodol; 10:1-16. 2010.

11. Munsell AH. A pigment color system and notation. Am J Psychol; 23(2):236-44. 1912.

12. Ekman P, Freisen WV. Facial signs of emotional experience. J Pers Soc Psychol; 39:1125-34. 1980.

13. Boyatzis, CJ, Varghese R. Children’s emotional associations with colors. J Gen Psychol; 155:77-85. 1994.

14. Cimbalo RS, Beck KL, Sendziak DS. Emotional toned pictures and color selection for children and college students. J Gen Psychol; 133:303-4. 2014.

15. Ballast DK. Interior design reference manual. Belmont, CA: Professional Pub. Inc.; 2002.

16. Lang J. Creating architectural theory: The role of the behavioral sciences in environmental design. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold; 1993.

17. Wexner LB. The degree to which colors (hues) are associated with mood-tones. J Appl Psychol; 6:432-6. 1954.

18. Schaie KW. Scaling the association between colors and mood tones. Am J Psychol; 74:266-73. 1961.

19. Schaie KW. A Q-sort study of color-mood association. J Proj Tech; 25:341-6. 1996.

20. Nolan RF, Dai Y, Stanley PD. An investigation of relationship between color choice and depression measured by the Beck Depression Inventory. Percep Mot Skills; 81:1195-200. 1995.

21. Birren F. Aspects of light and color bearing on the reactions of living things and the welfare of human beings. Chicago: Color and Human Response; 1978.

22. Sharpe DT. The psychology of color and design. Chicago: Nelson-Hall; 1974.

23. Kotler P. Atmospherics as a marketing tool. Journal of Retailing; 49(4):48-61. 1973.

24. Gerard RM. Differential effects of colored lights on psycho-physiological functions [unpublished doctoral dissertation], University of California; 1957.

25. Jacobs KW, Suess, JF. Effects of four psychological primary colors on anxiety state. Perceptual and Motor Skills; 41:207-10. 1975.

26. Naz Kaya. Relationship between color and emotion: a study of college students. USA: The University of Georgia; 2004.

27. Linton H. Color consulting: A Survey of International color design. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold; 1991.

Abstracted / indexed in

Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch) Created as SCI in 1964, Science Citation Index Expanded now indexes over 9,500 of the world’s most impactful journals across 178 scientific disciplines. More than 53 million records and 1.18 billion cited references date back from 1900 to present.

Biological Abstracts Easily discover critical journal coverage of the life sciences with Biological Abstracts, produced by the Web of Science Group, with topics ranging from botany to microbiology to pharmacology. Including BIOSIS indexing and MeSH terms, specialized indexing in Biological Abstracts helps you to discover more accurate, context-sensitive results.

Google Scholar Google Scholar is a freely accessible web search engine that indexes the full text or metadata of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines.

JournalSeek Genamics JournalSeek is the largest completely categorized database of freely available journal information available on the internet. The database presently contains 39226 titles. Journal information includes the description (aims and scope), journal abbreviation, journal homepage link, subject category and ISSN.

Current Contents - Clinical Medicine Current Contents - Clinical Medicine provides easy access to complete tables of contents, abstracts, bibliographic information and all other significant items in recently published issues from over 1,000 leading journals in clinical medicine.

BIOSIS Previews BIOSIS Previews is an English-language, bibliographic database service, with abstracts and citation indexing. It is part of Clarivate Analytics Web of Science suite. BIOSIS Previews indexes data from 1926 to the present.

Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition Journal Citation Reports/Science Edition aims to evaluate a journal’s value from multiple perspectives including the journal impact factor, descriptive data about a journal’s open access content as well as contributing authors, and provide readers a transparent and publisher-neutral data & statistics information about the journal.

Scopus: CiteScore 1.8 (2023) Scopus is Elsevier's abstract and citation database launched in 2004. Scopus covers nearly 36,377 titles (22,794 active titles and 13,583 Inactive titles) from approximately 11,678 publishers, of which 34,346 are peer-reviewed journals in top-level subject fields: life sciences, social sciences, physical sciences and health sciences.

Submission Turnaround Time