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Table 1 PICO focus question, criteria for inclusion, sources of information, search terms, search strategy, search filters, and search dates

From: A systematic review of the use of virtual reality or dental smartphone applications as interventions for management of paediatric dental anxiety

Focus question Can the use of virtual reality or smartphone applications decrease dental anxiety in paediatric patients?
Criteria Inclusion criteria English language
Subjects < 18 years
Involving dental treatment or examination
Involving element of virtual reality or bespoke smartphone application
Anxiety as primary/secondary outcome
  Exclusion criteria Non-English language papers
Adult patients (> 18)
Non-dental studies
Smartphone applications for uses other than to alleviate anxiety (e.g., to improve oral hygiene Studies using video glasses alone without virtual reality components
Information Sources Electronic databases The Cochrane Oral Health Group’s Trials Register, The Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL), MEDLINE(PubMed), EMBASE, PsycINFO, CINAHL, Scopus and Web of Science
  Journals All peer reviewed dental journals available online in above databases
  Other Online internet search engine (i.e. Google), internet research community websites (, reference crosschecks, hand-searches, etc
Search Terms (PICO) Population All humans studies involving Medical OR dental (medic* OR dentist* OR dental)
  Intervention/exposure Treatment or first appointment (treatment* OR procedure* OR operation* OR "first appointment*" OR "first clinic*" OR "first attendance*" OR hospital* OR an*esthe*)AND preparation OR anxiety OR autism OR stress (prepar* OR anxi* OR autis* OR stress*)
  Comparison None
  Outcome Anxiety/stress
Filters Language English
  Species Humans
  Ages No filter
  Journal categories All
Search query as performed in electronic databases (TITLE-ABS-KEY (medic* OR dentist* OR dental)) AND ((TITLE-ABS-KEY ((prepar* OR anxi* OR autis* OR stress*)) AND TITLE-ABS-KEY ((treatment* OR procedure* OR operation* OR "first appointment*" OR "first clinic*" OR "first attendance*" OR hospital* OR an*esthe*)))) AND ((TITLE-ABS-KEY (({app} OR app's OR apps) AND (mobile* OR smartphone* OR iphone* OR ipad* OR tablet*)) OR TITLE-ABS-KEY ({little journey}) OR TITLE-ABS-KEY ({virtual reality MRI}) OR TITLE-ABS-KEY ({take ten}) OR TITLE-ABS-KEY ({sidekicks!}) OR TITLE-ABS-KEY ({brighthearts}))) AND (LIMIT-TO (LANGUAGE, "English")) AND (LIMIT-TO (DOCTYPE, "ar") OR LIMIT-TO (DOCTYPE, "re"))
Search Dates   Last confirmatory online final search was performed on 31/08/2019. No further online searches were performed after this date