A study of the effectiveness of personal oral-hygiene measures performed at different intervals showed that longer intervals compromise gingival health when compared to short intervals.
This randomised clinical trial, summarised as JCP Digest 90, sought to assess the correlation between dental-plaque accumulation and gingival health in patients under periodontal maintenance who perform personal oral hygiene at different intervals.
While the standard recommendation is that personal oral hygiene should be performed twice a day, some data have suggested that once per day could be sufficient to maintain gingival health in patients, whether or not they have a history of periodontitis.
The study allocated subjects to three groups, with personal oral hygiene performed at intervals of 12, 24, and 48 hours. Various parameters – Plaque index (PI), gingival index (GI), probing depth (PD), clinical attachment level (CAL), and bleeding on probing (BoP) – were recorded at baseline, 30 days, and 90 days.
The researchers found that the frequency of personal oral-hygiene measures had an influence on the correlation between dental-plaque accumulation and gingival inflammation, with extended intervals compromising gingival health when compared to short intervals.
They found a positive correlation between dental-plaque accumulation with GI and BoP and this correlation was reinforced in the group which performed oral hygiene measures at intervals of 48 hours.
The research was summarised for JCP Digest by students at the EFP-accredited postgraduate programme in periodontology at KU Leuven in Belgium.