The “dental prophylaxis” procedure is more commonly termed a “dental cleaning”. However, it is important to note that what your dental professional is accomplishing during this procedure is much more complex than “just a cleaning”. Try as we may, our at home methods (toothbrush and floss) are inadequate to completely debride our teeth of the plaque and tartar that accumulates over time. In order to complete these goals, we all require regular treatment using specialized instruments by individuals with specialized training to adequately maintain teeth and gums in optimal health. During these appointments, there are other diagnostic tasks completed. Your dental professional will also complete a once yearly full mouth periodontal charting so that any minute changes in your gingival health can be identified and the necessary intervention can be made.