Even if you are able to brush your own teeth and remove much of the plaque, an annual cleaning at your dentist's office is recommended at least twice a year. This cleaning may be performed by a dentist or dental hygienist. The cleaning usually lasts for between 30 and 60 minutes. The hygienist will offer you a choice of toothpaste flavors. He will then use a special electric toothbrush to thoroughly brush and polish your teeth. This cleaning may also be accompanied by a visual exam, and the use of a metal dental instrument with a pick on the end, to remove plaque between teeth and at the gum line.