Periodontal disease relies upon the presence of a mature biofilm rich in periodontopathogens, and is evident to varying degrees in the majority of U.S. adults.1 The progression of periodontal disease is highly variable and dependent largely upon the host response, with bacterial variances between individuals accounting for only 20% of cases progressing.2 Nonetheless, the removal of bacteria and their byproducts is essential to prevent and halt periodontal disease. Home care oral hygiene measures can be effective in removing supragingival biofilm when properly performed. However, once a mature subgingival biofilm has developed, or dental calculus is present, home care is ineffective and clinical care is required. In the absence of clinical intervention, periodontal disease progression in individual patients leads to soft tissue attachment loss and bone loss.
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