DentalCare Logo

Biofilm: A New View of Plaque


Pamela R. Overman, EdD, RDH

Credit Hours:

2 Hour(s)


The primary learning objective for this course is to increase your general knowledge of the various ways that dental professionals have viewed plaque throughout the years, highlighting the current view of plaque as a biofilm and the ramific...

View More

(Use this feature to create assignments for your students and staff.)


The primary learning objective for this course is to increase your general knowledge of the various ways that dental professionals have viewed plaque throughout the years, highlighting the current view of plaque as a biofilm and the ramifications for periodontal therapy.

Dental researchers have attempted to understand the microbial nature of oral diseases over the past 130 years. Their view of plaque and its constituent microorganisms has shifted from a specific plaque hypothesis to a non-specific plaque hypothesis and back again to a theory of specific periodontal pathogens in plaque. Changes in the way plaque and its microorganisms are viewed affect the strategies used to prevent and control periodontal diseases. In recent years, dental researchers have begun to view plaque as a biofilm. This shifting view of plaque has important implications for future efforts in research, treatment and prevention.

  • Intended Audience:

    Dentists, Dental Hygienists, Dental Assistants, Dental Students, Dental Hygiene Students, Dental Assisting Students

  • Date Course Online:

    Apr 17, 2001

  • Last Revision Date:

    Feb 18, 2020

  • Course Expiration Date:

    Feb 17, 2023

  • Cost:


  • Method:


  • AGD Subject Code(s):


Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, the dental professional should be able to:

  • State a definition of biofilm.
  • Discuss the positive and negative aspects of biofilm formation in nature. Include examples of how biofilm provides benefits and harms.
  • Compare and contrast the differing views of bacterial plaque at three points in time: 1880-1930; 1930-1960; and 1960 to current times.
  • Compare and contrast the behavior of bacteria as grown on culture plates with their behavior in biofilms.
  • Describe strategies used currently for control of oral biofilm.
  • List the strategies that are under consideration for control of oral biofilms.


  • P&G is providing these resource materials to dental professionals. We do not own this content nor are we responsible for any material herein.
  • Participants must always be aware of the hazards of using limited knowledge in integrating new techniques or procedures into their practice.  Only sound evidence-based dentistry should be used in patient therapy.

Note:  Registration is required to take test.


Conflict of Interest Disclosure Statement

  • The author has done consulting work for P&G.
Pamela R. Overman

Pamela R. Overman


Dr. Pamela Overman is professor emerita of dentistry at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Dentistry. Throughout her academic career, Dr. Overman taught dental, dental hygiene and graduate students in oral health education and ...

View More

Submission Information

Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) Submission For credit transfers to appear in your AGD account in real time, make sure to add your AGD membership number in the field provided on the “Share Your Test Score” page.

CE Broker For all states that use CE Broker for licensure, “proof of completions” are electronically reported the first of every month. If a course was taken in November, the “proof of completion” will be submitted the beginning of December.



ADA CERP Recognized Provider

The Procter & Gamble Company is an ADA CERP Recognized Provider.

ADA CERP is a service of the American Dental Association to assist dental professionals in identifying quality providers of continuing dental education. ADA CERP does not approve or endorse individual courses or instructors, nor does it imply acceptance of credit hours by boards of dentistry.

Concerns or complaints about a dental CE provider may be directed to the provider or to ADA CERP at

AGD Pace Logo

Approved PACE Program Provider


Nationally Approved PACE Program Provider for FAGD/MAGD credit.

Approval does not imply acceptance by any regulatory authority or AGD endorsement.

8/1/2021 to 7/31/2027

Provider ID# 211886


AADH Approved Program Provider

Procter & Gamble is designated as an approved Provider by the American Academy of Dental Hygiene, Inc. #AADHPGC (January 1, 2022-December 31, 2023). Approval does not imply acceptance by a state or provincial Board of Dentistry. Licensee should maintain this document in the event of an audit.