Caries experience and oral hygiene status of freshman undergraduate students in a Nigerian University.
Objectives: Dental caries is an important public health problem across the world with plaque removal showed to be an important element of oral health in order to prevent dental caries, with good oral hygiene being an important primary preventive measure to prevent dental caries. To access the caries experience and oral hygiene status of freshman undergraduate student. Methods: This study adopted an analytic cross-sectional study of freshman students at the University of Benin. 100 male students and 100 female students participated in the study. Caries experience was assessed using the WHO caries assessment method (DMFT). Oral hygiene status was assessed using the Simplified Oral Hygiene Index (OHI-S ) by Greene and Vermillion. Results: The mean DMFT was 1-80 ± 2.04 among the study population. majority (91.0%) of the respondents had oral hygiene index of >1.2-3.0 (Fair oral hygiene). Caries experience was observed in 51.5% of the study population however, a higher proportion (93.2%) of those who had dental caries had fair oral hygiene. There was no statistically significant association between caries experience and oral hygiene status of the respondents, (p=0.175). A higher proportion of male participants had fair oral hygiene while only 4 female participants had poor oral hygiene and this was statistically significant (P=0.02). There was no statistically significant association between DMFT Scores and oral hygiene status among the participants, P=0.18 Conclusion: Caries experience was high however, there was no statistically significant association between caries experience and oral hygiene status among freshman undergraduate students.