“My first year of clinical practice was really confusing. What I had been taught in dental school just wasn’t working out with my patients in Texas. Removing calculus every six months was supposed to be the ultimate goal, along with trying to convince patients that daily brushing and flossing were critical. It didn’t take long to realize that this plan did not produce the desired results for everyone I treated. The textbook goal at that time defined a healthy mouth as having pink, firm, stippled gingivae, minimal deposits, and no bleeding. Yes, there were patients who fell into this category. Most who were classified as healthy performed the required daily brushing and flossing routine and had a hygiene visit like clockwork every six months.”

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