Debridement is a medical term referring to the removal of dead, damaged, or infected tissue to improve the healing potential of the remaining healthy tissue. Removal may be surgical, mechanical, chemical, autolytic (self-digestion), and by maggot therapy, where certain species of live maggots selectively eat only necrotic tissue.
In oral hygiene and dentistry debridement refers to the removal of the calculus that has accumulated over teeth. Debridement in this case can be done using ultrasound instruments, which dislodge the tartar allowing it to be removed easily, and hand tools. Hydrogen peroxide can also be used.