Teeth cleaning, a.k.a. prophylaxis, is the professional removal of tartar (mineralized plaque) from teeth. Tatar gathers even with careful brushing and flossing, particularly in places that brushes do not reach. Dental hygienists use various instruments to loosen and remove deposits from the teeth, leaving them whiter and preventing disease and decay.
Teeth become discolored over time due to tobacco use, consumption of coffee and other staining beverages, some medications and general age. Dentists have several options for teeth whitening, including laser and bleach treatments. Your dentist may recommend a treatment done in-office or one to take home.