Halitosis: a review of the literature on its prevalence, impact and control

Oral Health Prev Dent. 2014;12(4):297-304. doi: 10.3290/j.ohpd.a33135.


Halitosis is the offensive or disagreeable odour that may emanate from the mouth. In 80%-90% of cases, bacterial activities especially on the dorsum of the tongue are implicated. Current studies on halitosis accessed from electronic databases were appraised in the light of prevalence, impact and control of halitosis. Halitosis has a worldwide occurrence with a prevalence range of 22% to 50%. Due to the associated social and psychological effects, it should be taken seriously in all affected patients. Oral healthcare professionals ought to be well informed, because their office(s) are usually the first points of call for the affected patients.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biofilms
  • Global Health
  • Halitosis / epidemiology*
  • Halitosis / prevention & control
  • Halitosis / psychology
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Oral Hygiene
  • Tongue / microbiology