The rapid growth in our understanding of the pathogenesis of periodontal disease has led to a change in therapeutic emphasis, supplementing traditional, non-specific, mechanical plaque control with a more focused targeting of pathogenic organisms. New topical preparations provide high antimicrobial doses at diseased sites without the systemic antibiotic loading which is now, in itself, a cause of concern due to the increasing tendency of micro-organisms to become resistant to antimicrobial agents. This article reviews the current methods of delivering antimicrobial agents to the gingival crevice and evaluates their roles in practical periodontal therapy.
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