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2342 Blue Stone Hills Dr
Harrisonburg, VA 22801
(540) 433-3625

Harrisonburg Cosmetic Dentist Offering Transformative In-Office, At-Home Teeth Whitening

To look your very best, you want a smile that really sparkles. In their natural form, the shade of your teeth should match the whites of your eyes. But if you are like most people, your smile has gotten a little -- or a lot -- darker over time. Frequent exposure to your favorite foods and beverages combined with less-than-perfect dental hygiene and even the use of certain medications can discolor your teeth. To erase stains and reveal your most youthful smile,cosmetic dentists Dr. David Curtin and Dr. Sarah Janowski offer in-office and at-home teeth whitening at Blue Stone Hills Dentistry.

Why Teeth Stain Over Time

The teeth are white because their outer layer, the enamel, is made of calcium. But because tooth enamel is porous, the teeth are also prone to absorbing the colors of what they are exposed to. Even with regular brushing and flossing, most adults notice their smiles looking less-than-bright over time.

Some of the most common items causing the teeth to discolor include:

  • Wine: It is not surprising that red wine contains pigments that cause your teeth to discolor, but the acids in white wine can actually cause more harm. They weaken the tooth enamel, making the smile more susceptible to absorbing stains from whatever you eat alongside or after your glass of chardonnay.
  • Coffee: That morning cup of joe gradually makes your teeth appear brown, or “dingy.”
  • Ripe berries, tomato sauce, and other dark fruits and vegetables adhere to the teeth and change their color.
  • Tobacco use of any kind: Smoking, chewing tobacco, even some e-cigarettes can cause staining.
  • Certain medications, like tetracycline, can cause the teeth to take on a gray cast.

Why Choose Professional Teeth Whitening?

woman holding whitening strip

From whitestrips to toothpastes and special mouthrinses, there are a number of options at the grocery store that promise whiter teeth in as few as five or seven days. Are they worth it? Let’s compare professional teeth whitening vs. what you can buy at the pharmacy.

Professional Teeth Whitening                                     Over-the-counter Whitening

Customized for your unique smile                               One size fits all

Activated immediately before treatment                    May sit on the shelf for months before use

Professional strength                                                     Weaker whitening formula

Long-lasting results                                                        May need frequent reapplications


For the safest, most effective results, professional teeth whitening is by far the best choice. At Blue Stone Hills Dentistry, we are pleased to offer our adult patients two options in teeth whitening: in-office and at-home whitening.

In-Office Whitening

woman holding whitening strip

With an in-office whitening treatment, your cosmetic dentist can reveal your dazzling smile in just one, one hour visit to our office. An in-office treatment is a wonderful option for patients who are interested in revealing rapid results, or for those who simply prefer the efficiency of whitening with a single treatment.

For its safety and effectiveness, Blue Stone Hills Dentistry prefers Opalescence teeth whitening. The treatment works with a special gel that penetrates your tooth enamel to reach the stains that lie just below the surface of the teeth. Once here, oxygen molecules from the gel react with the discoloration, breaking the bonds that show up as stains for brighter, whiter teeth.

In-office teeth whitening offers several benefits -- and Opalescence, specifically, provides patients with a wealth of advantages.

  • Opalescence maintains the health of tooth enamel throughout the whitening process with doses of potassium nitrate and fluoride.
  • Specially formulated to prevent dehydration, which may cause the stains to reappear.
  • In-office whitening reveals results faster than any other option.
  • Results can last for years to come with proper maintenance.

Some patients experience tooth sensitivity after a professional teeth whitening treatment. To curb discomfort, use an anti-sensitivity toothpaste or mouthwash in the days or weeks leading up to your appointment.

At-Home Whitening

woman holding whitening strip

Patients who prefer to whiten their teeth from the comfort and privacy of their own homes appreciate at-home treatments. The custom-fitted trays hold the professional strength gel right up against the tooth enamel for maximum whitening. Once your trays are ready, you will simply use your treatment for the directed amount of time every morning or evening. After about two weeks, you will be smiling brighter than ever.

During your take-home whitening treatment -- especially right after each application -- your teeth will be more susceptible to staining. Make sure you take special precautions to avoid discoloration throughout the treatment. It is best to whiten in the evening, but if you choose to apply the treatment in the morning, avoid drinking coffee, soda, or any colored beverage in the first half hour after you whiten. 

Maintain good dental hygiene habits during and after your whitening treatment. Using an anti-sensitivity toothpaste will help to strengthen tooth enamel for reduced sensitivity.

Maintaining Your Dazzling Results

After you have your teeth whitened with a professional teeth whitening treatment, you will want to enjoy your results for long to come. With a few slight lifestyle adjustments and periodic touch-up treatments as necessary, you may never need another whitening treatment again! For long-lasting results, consider…

  • Cutting back on coffee, or adding creamer or milk to lighten the shade of your daily cup.
  • Drinking dark beverages out of a straw to avoid contact with your tooth enamel.
  • Eating cheese or other dairy products with dark-colored foods and beverages; calcium strengthens the enamel to protect against stains.
  • Brushing your teeth before drinking wine instead of after. Removing plaque makes it less likely that dark pigments will cling to the teeth.
  • Keeping up with your excellent dental hygiene habits, including regular brushing, flossing, and twice-annual visits to Blue Stone Hills Dentistry.

Schedule an Appointment Today!

Let the team at Blue Stone Hills Dentistry brighten your smile with a professional teeth whitening treatment! We will thoroughly discuss your options and together determine whether in-office or at-home teeth whitening suits your smile and your lifestyle best. Contact our office to schedule an appointment today.