Can Teeth Whitening Make Your Smile Bright and Healthy?


Smiling is such a natural reaction for all of us. In my Capitol Hill Dental practice, I  see patients who want their smile to be bright and healthy.  Of course. Your smile helps you connect with others and shows self-confidence. If you are unhappy with your smile, a teeth whitening treatment is one of the most popular and economical ways to restore a bright and healthy look.

What Is Teeth Whitening?

Teeth whitening is a cosmetic dentistry treatment, also known as dental bleaching, which restores or brightens the natural tooth color. The process typically involves applying a bleaching agent to the teeth to break down stains that are bonded to the tooth enamel. Some whitening treatments use a particular light to accelerate the process.

For patients who want a healthier looking smile, dentists offer at-home and in-office teeth whitening treatments.  There are differences between the two options which will help determine which may be right for you.

Why Would I Choose In-Office Whitening? 


Professional in-office teeth whitening is the most efficient and safest way to achieve whiter teeth. Your treatment plan will be customized to your individual goals and concerns, and the results are obtained quickly – in most cases 1 hour.

Many patients find their results last for a year or more before needing a touch-up. Whitening treatments often work best on yellowish-colored teeth. However, if you have brownish, grayish, or blue-gray discolorations, the process may still be effective. Your dental professional will assess the options for you during your consultation.

What Should I Expect With At-Home Whitening?

For those who prefer take-home teeth whitening, both overnight and daytime whitening systems are available. Both alternatives typically use a version of pre-filled whitening gel trays and take about 10-14 days to achieve results that last for several months.

How Do Over-the-Counter Whitening Products Compare?

The popularity of teeth whitening has generated a variety of whitening products. Many of these are readily available at most drug stores and grocery stores. These products, which tend to have limited and short-lived effects, include whitening strips, gels, toothpaste, and rinses. These products work best with patients who have minimal staining.

Is Teeth Whitening Always Successful? 

A dental cleaning within the past four weeks is highly recommended to get the best whitening results.  The whitening gel will not alter the shade of any composite resins (“bonding”), crowns, or veneers on your teeth. If you suffered childhood trauma to your teeth while the enamel was still forming, or antibiotic staining, whitening is less effective.

Note of caution: You want to avoid the extreme whitening that results in a “Hollywood glow in the dark” white smile. Not only does it look fake, but it may potentially be harmful to the health of your teeth. Talk with us about your unique situation and best options.

Remember, healthy teeth make a healthy smile!

Dr. Nishan Halim

As a cosmetic dentist in DC, Dr. Halim recommends GLO Tooth Whitening Systems for his patients. GLO Science offers a variety of options to fit your budget AND your lifestyle!  Dr. Halim currently provides in-office treatment accompanied by at-home additional treatment OR exclusively at-home treatment.   Schedule an appointment with Dr. Halim to discuss your best options and how to get started.

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