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Teeth Whitening vs. Teeth Cleaning: Understanding the Difference

Teeth Whitening vs. Teeth Cleaning: Understanding the Difference

  • Jun 03, 2023

A bright and healthy smile is something we all desire. Maintaining good oral hygiene plays a vital role in achieving and preserving that beautiful smile. Regular dental visits are crucial for oral health, but it's important to understand the distinction between two common dental procedures: teeth whitening and teeth cleaning.

While both contribute to a brighter smile, they serve different purposes. In this blog, we will delve into the difference between teeth whitening and teeth cleaning, shedding light on their respective benefits and procedures.

Teeth Cleaning:

Teeth cleaning, also known as dental prophylaxis, is a routine procedure performed by dental hygienists or dentists. It involves the removal of plaque and tartar build-up from the teeth, aiming to maintain oral health and prevent gum diseases such as gingivitis and periodontitis.

During a professional tooth cleaning, the dental professional uses specialised tools to scrape away the accumulated plaque and tartar, especially in areas that are hard to reach with regular brushing and flossing. They may also polish the teeth to remove surface stains and give them a smoother appearance.

Benefits of Teeth Cleaning:

  1. Prevents gum diseases: Regular teeth cleaning helps remove plaque and tartar, which are major contributors to gum diseases. By eliminating these harmful substances, the risk of developing gingivitis or periodontitis is significantly reduced.
  2. Fresher breath: The removal of plaque and tartar also helps combat bad breath caused by the bacteria present in these deposits.
  3. Early detection of dental issues: During a teeth cleaning appointment, the dental professional examines your oral cavity, enabling them to identify any potential dental problems like cavities, cracked teeth, or signs of oral cancer. Early detection increases the chances of successful treatment.
  4. Maintains overall oral health: Teeth cleaning is an essential part of maintaining optimal oral health. By regularly removing plaque and tartar, you contribute to the longevity of your teeth and gums.

Teeth Whitening:

Teeth whitening, also known as dental bleaching, is a cosmetic procedure aimed at lightening the shade of the teeth and enhancing their appearance. It involves the use of various whitening agents to eliminate stains and discoloration caused by factors such as age, smoking, coffee, tea, or certain medications. Teeth whitening can be performed in-office by a dentist or at home using professional-grade whitening kits provided by dental professionals.

Benefits of Teeth Whitening:

  1. Enhances smile aesthetics: Teeth whitening helps remove stains and discoloration, giving your smile a brighter, more attractive appearance. It can boost self-confidence and improve your overall facial aesthetics.
  2. Non-invasive procedure: Teeth whitening is a non-invasive treatment that does not involve any surgical procedures. It is generally safe and painless when performed under professional supervision.
  3. Personalised treatment: Whether you opt for in-office teeth whitening or at-home kits, the treatment can be customised to meet your specific needs and desired level of whitening.
  4. Quick results: Teeth whitening typically provides noticeable results within a relatively short period. In-office treatments often yield immediate results, while at-home kits require consistent use over a few weeks to achieve the desired outcome.


Teeth cleaning and teeth whitening are distinct dental procedures that contribute to maintaining a healthy and beautiful smile. While teeth cleaning focuses on oral hygiene and preventive measures, teeth whitening is a cosmetic procedure aimed at enhancing the appearance of the teeth. Regular teeth cleaning is essential for oral health, preventing gum diseases, and maintaining overall well-being.

Teeth whitening, on the other hand, is a choice individuals make to achieve a brighter and more attractive smile. It is important to consult with a dental professional to determine which procedure is most suitable for your specific needs and goals. Remember, a healthy smile is a reflection of good oral hygiene and care.

If you have any concerns about Tooth Health or if you are due for your dental check-up, then contact Signature Dental South Perth for advice. Call now to book a consultation at(08) 9474 4750.