This randomized, observer-blind, parallel, controlled study determined the efficacy of an essential oils-containing (EO) antiseptic mouthrinse (in conjunction with toothbrushing) in reducing and/or controlling existing plaque or gingivitis over 6 months. Toothbrushing, combined with placebo rinsing, served as the control (C). Following ethics board approval (Biosci Research Canada, Ltd. Institutional Review Board), 139 healthy adults with mild to moderate plaque and gingivitis were randomized into EO or C groups. All subjects received oral/written instructions, monthly monitoring, and assigned unsupervised rinses. Efficacy variables were whole-mouth mean modified gingival index (MGI), Turesky modification of the Quigley Hein plaque index (PI), bleeding index (BI) at 6, 12, and 24 weeks, and data analysis through an analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) model. The EO group provided greater and increasing MGI, PI, and BI reductions than did C group over all examination periods. Compared to the C group, at 6, 12, and 24 weeks, MGI reductions for the EO group were 4.7%, 9.1%, and 20.4%, and PI reductions were 7.6%, 12.6%, and 26.3%, respectively. BI scores decreased over time and were significant compared to those for the C group (P < 0.001). Additionally, the percentages of sites improved versus baseline MGI over time for EO were 14.1%, 26.4%, and 43.3%, respectively. This study demonstrated that an EO-containing mouthrinse can provide an increasing benefit over a period of 6 months with twice daily use. This study also confirmed that an antiseptic EO rinse can provide a clinically significant benefit in reducing existing plaque and gingivitis.