Comparison of Clinical and Self-Reported Halitosis among Secondary School Adolescents in Maiduguri, Borno State Nigeria.

Clinical and self-reported halitosis


  • Adeola Temitope WILLIAMS
  • Chinwe C. EZECHUKWU
  • Falmata B. BABABE
  • Bamidele. Olubukola POPOOLA
  • Olushola IBIYEMI


Self-reported halitosis, clinical halitosis, organoleptic halitosis,, adolescents


Background: Halitosis is of extreme relevance in adolescents due to their peculiar predisposition to conditions that affect social relationships.

Objective: To assess the factors associated with halitosis and compare its prevalence using self and clinical reports among secondary school adolescents in Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria.

Methods: This cross-sectional study was carried out among one hundred and fifty 12-18-year-old secondary school students in Maiduguri. The multistage sampling technique was used for the selection of participants and data was collected using an interviewer-administered structured questionnaire on socio-demography, knowledge of the aetiology of halitosis, oral hygiene practices and self-perception of halitosis. A trained and calibrated examiner did clinical halitosis by organoleptic assessment. A chi-square test and logistic regression analysis were done to determine the association between the investigated factors and halitosis. The level of test of significance (p) was set at < 0.05

Results: The prevalence of self-reported halitosis was 17.3 % while using the organoleptic method (clinical halitosis), about 12 (8.0%) had slight to moderate halitosis. There was no statistically significant association between self-reported halitosis and halitosis determined using the organoleptic method. Among the investigated factors, frequency of brushing and gingival bleeding were found to be statistically significantly associated with self-reported halitosis, (aOR 3.64; p=0.032) and (aOR 3.06; p=0.045) respectively.

Conclusion: Adolescents reported halitosis more than was clinically present which may have led to more aggressive oral hygiene practices. There is therefore the need to increase awareness on halitosis and proper oral health behaviour in adolescents in the Northern part of Nigeria.


Author Biographies

Adeola Temitope WILLIAMS

Department of Periodontology and Community

Dentistry, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria.


Department of Preventive Dentistry, University of Maiduguri, Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria

Falmata B. BABABE

Department of Periodontology and Community Dentistry, University of Ibadan. Ibadan, Oyo state, Nigeria

Bamidele. Olubukola POPOOLA

Department of Child Oral Health, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo state, Nigeria

Olushola IBIYEMI

Department of Periodontology and Community Dentistry, University of Ibadan. Ibadan, Oyo state, Nigeria