By Mark Levy | September 1, 2011
The sound of the dentist drill. One of the things that people complain (and joke about) when visiting the dental office. Researchers in England have discovered a new way to treat cavities that may do away with the high pitched whine of the dental drill in the future.
Tooth decay is caused by bacteria which live in your mouth. Keeping these bacteria under control is the reason we stress brushing and flossing every day. A “side effect” of all of these bacteria is the acid that they produce. This acid dissolves the minerals in your teeth causing microscopic holes. These tiny holes can then grow and form cavities.
Researchers at the University of Leeds discovered that a peptide based fluid can be brushed onto teeth at the first signs of tooth decay and can stop the decay process. The technology is based on how teeth are formed and stimulates the tooth to regenerate. The fluid seeps into the microscopic holes and forms a gel, this gel then provides a framework that attracts calcium and rebuilds the missing minerals from within the tooth. Natural and pain free cavity correction.
“This may sound to good to be true, but we are essentially helping acid-damaged teeth to regenerate themselves” said Jennifer Kirkham. The fluid was recently tested on a small number of patients who had early signs of tooth decay. The results showed that the peptide technology could reverse the damage.
“The main reason that people don’t go to the dentist regularly is fear. If we can offer a treatment that is completely non-invasive, that doesn’t involve a mechanical drill, then we can change that perceived link between dental treatment and pain” said Dr. Paul Brunton who oversaw the patient testing. He continued “… this is a novel approach that enables the patients to keep their natural teeth.”
Until this technology reaches dental offices we need to rely on the current methods of dealing with tooth decay. Prevention is key– brush and floss daily and don’t forget to visit your dental hygienist regularly for professional cleanings. If you avoid visiting the dentist because of fear and are avoiding treating cavities then sedation dentistry can help. Sedation dentistry lets you have the treatment you need without anxiety or fear with just one little pill.
For more information about sedation dentistry and how we can help you get the care you need please contact StoneRidge Dental Care in Gahanna at 614-476-6696.
By Mark Levy | February 1, 2011
Fear of dentists is a popular topic for TV comedians. If you suffer from dental anxiety, however, you know that it is no laughing matter. Some studies suggest that up to 75% of the population experiences some type of anxiety over dental visits. For most patients this is merely mild anxiety but some people delay or avoid dental treatment for years.
Putting off needed dental care only leads to higher expenses and even more treatment needed down the road. This is because existing problems only continue to get worse over time. Modern dental practices are much different than the places that our grandparent’s visited and many treatment options are available.
Sedation dentistry, also called relaxation dentistry, allows dentists to give patients with dental fears much needed treatment without the patient experiencing the anxiety that usually comes with their dental care. Depending upon the needs of the patient there are various types of sedation available ranging from nitrous oxide (laughing gas) to oral sedation. The vast majority of patients are able to receive all their needed care using a mild oral sedative that allows them to completely relax. Sedation dentistry allows years of dental neglect to be repaired in just one visit.
If you experience fear or apprehension when visiting the dentist please contact Dr. Mark Levy today at 7614-476-6696 to discuss your options for sedation dentistry. Conveniently located in Gahanna, Ohio for all your cosmetic and restorative dental needs.
By Mark Levy | December 24, 2010
In the US more than $50 billion is spent each year on the treatment of cavities and tooth decay is a major public health problem worldwide. Prevention of cavities has made great strides over the past several decades. Fluoride added to toothpaste, mouthwash and municipal water supplies has proven to be one of the most effective ways to prevent decay.
The fact that fluoride makes tooth enamel more resistant to decay has been known by scientists for a long time – but new research has shown that the protective shield that fluoride helps form on teeth is 100 times thinner than previously believed. The scientists are now questioning whether a layer that is so thin and which can be easily worn away by chewing, can really shield teeth from decay or if there is some other effect on the teeth enamel that is not yet understood. A new study is planned that will search for the answer.
In the meantime, we do understand that good home care, including brushing and flossing properly, combined with regular professional dental cleanings and check-ups can reduce cavity formation. Regular dental care actually saves money in the long-run! If cavities can be prevented, or detected when very small, fewer and smaller dental restorations are required. Leaving you with a healthier smile!
Preventative care is important at any age. Fluoride is not just for children and regular dental cleanings should be standard for all members of your family. Some people feel anxious or fearful about dental appointments and avoid this needed preventive care. There is a solution to this problem.
If you or a family member suffers from anxiety or fear about dental appointments please ask us about your options for sedation dentistry. Sedation dentistry offers you a safe, effective way of managing your anxiety and receiving the dental care you need in a calm relaxed state.
In the Columbus, Ohio area please contact Dr. Mark Levy at 614-476-6696 and ask about your options for sedation dentistry.
By Mark Levy | November 6, 2010
Researchers at Harvard Medical School have found that dietary intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids, such as fish oil, may be effective for treatment and prevention of periodontitis. Periodontitis occurs when gum infection such as gingivitis is left untreated. The infection spreads from the gums to the ligaments and bone that support the teeth. The teeth eventually become loose and fall out. Periodontitis is the most common cause of tooth loss in adults.
The study showed that people who had the highest amount of polyunsaturated fats as a part of their diet were approximately 20% less likely to have periodontitis. Foods that contain significant amounts of the good fats include fatty fish like salmon, peanut butter and nuts.
Dr. Elizabeth Kaye of the Boston University School of Dental Medicine noted three interesting results emerged from this study. One was that the odds of developing periodontal disease were significantly reduced even when the intake of polyunsaturated fatty acids was modest. She notes that the study also showed that more is not better in this case – higher intake did not create any further reduction in the odds of having the disease. Thirdly, the results did not change when dietary sources plus supplements were studied. This means that getting a moderate dose of these good fats through diet seem to work just as well as adding pills.
What does this mean for our patients? At this time we know that eating good fats such as salmon and nuts a few times per week are good for lots of things in our bodies – now we are adding gum health to the list. Popping fish oil pills won’t cure your periodontal disease however. Treatment by a dental professional is required to reverse the damage done by infection and inflammation.
If you have any of the following symptoms you have a type of gum disease and should seek treatment as soon as possible. The disease does not go away on its own and will only worsen over time.
- Bad Breath
- Bright red or reddish purple gums
- Shiny or swollen gums
- Bleeding when you brush or floss
- Gums that are tender to the touch
- Loose teeth
Please contact StoneRidge Dental Care at 614-476-6696 as soon as possible to arrange your appointment. If you have avoided dental care due to fear or anxiety please ask about your options for sedation dentistry. At StoneRidge Dental Care you can get the care that you need without worry.
By Mark Levy | October 19, 2010
As many as 20% of patients who don’t make regular trips to the dentist cite the fear of dentists as the primary reason why they don’t seek regular dental treatment.
Since it is so important for patients to receive regular dental care for overall health, here at StoneRidge Dental we try to encourage our patients to keep their regular dental appointments by making visits as comfortable and stress free as possible. In addition to the early detection of dental problems like oral bone loss, infection, and gum disease, poor dental hygiene can also lead to an increased risk of strokes and heart disease. Part of your comprehensive examination also includes a regular check for oral cancer, which may otherwise go undetected.
The fear of dentists can be the result of numerous situations, but is frequently the result of the anticipation of pain, either involving the procedure itself or the needles that are associated with the numbing process. Many older patients may have endured dental treatments that were unduly painful prior to modern pain free dental techniques.
A feeling of not being in control may also result in a fear of dentists and in some rare cases, a phobia of dental care.
Despite the nature of fearful symptoms in some patients, there are numerous options that are available to provide successful dental treatment.
Sedation dentistry uses a range of medications and most anxious patients respond well to it. While local anesthetics may also be needed during a potentially painful procedure, the injection is usually given following the administration of a sedative. Before appointments, oral sedatives may be given to patients inducing a feeling of relaxation. Another tool that is used in sedation dentistry is nitrous oxide which gives the patient a calm and relaxed feeling when it is inhaled.
Please contact my Columbus, Ohio full-service dental office today to discuss your options for anxiety-free dental treatment. Get the care you need without the stress by calling 614-476-6696 today.
By Mark Levy | October 12, 2010
Halloween is almost here with the cute kids in costumes and the not-so-cute bowl of Halloween goodies lurking by the front door. The American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD) has provided recommendations to help preserve children’ s teeth in October and throughout the year. These suggestions work for everyone – not just the kids!
- Avoid chewy treats that stick to teeth and cause more damage
- Monitor candy consumption – allow treats in moderation
- Mix in healthy snacks. Have some cheese or yogurt along with that piece of candy.
- Floss after snacking – teach your children the proper technique (if you are unsure ask your dentist)
- Make tooth brushing fun – Seasonal tooth brushes can get kids excited about brushing.
- Schedule a visit to the dentist.
According to Dr. John R. Liu, President of the AAPD “Let’s face it, Halloween is a holiday that every child looks forward to and embraces each year. Rather than denying children the option to trick or treat, we advise that parents maintain their regular routine.” He suggests “Choose each child’s favorite treat and allow them to enjoy one piece after a meal. The remainder of the candy can be given to a local homeless shelter or a food bank in order to prevent overindulgence.”
Candy is no more likely to cause cavities than most other foods but children, and adults, who snack frequently are at the greatest risk for cavities. Reduce the risk of cavities for you and your family by contacting StoneRidge Dental Care today at 614-476-6696 and scheduling your appointment. Unlike Halloween ghosts and goblins, there is nothing to be afraid of at StoneRidge Dental Care where you have options for anxiety-free dental care. Ask about your sedation dentistry options when you call.
By Mark Levy | October 6, 2010
Based on a new survey conducted by Waterpik a clean mouth is a turn-on. The survey suggested that partners preferred good oral hygiene over date night standards such as dimming the lights, candles, wearing perfume or listening to mood music. According to Kelton Research “the results of this study reinforced some of what we already knew- that most consumers simply don’t like to floss with string – but we were surprised at how important oral hygiene was in order to be attractive to your significant other.”
The survey also found that despite valuing good flossing habits in others, Americans have a complicated relationship with floss.
Survey shows – Americans are most likely to floss when food is stuck in their teeth (64%) or right before going to the dentist(51%).
Survey shows – Almost 60% say they deserve a barely passing grade (C or lower) for their efforts to floss every day.
Survey shows – Almost the same percentage (57%) says that floss makes their gums bleed or that the floss gets stuck between their teeth.
The last part of the survey is the most disturbing – if your gums bleed when you brush or floss it means that gum disease is present. Gum disease not only affects your oral health, causing bad breath, sore gums and potential tooth loss – the oral bacteria involved have been linked to illness such as diabetes, heart disease, certain cancers and stroke.
If your gums bleed when you brush or floss please contact my Columbus area dental practice today at 614-476-6696. Gum disease is treatable and new advances have made treatment much simpler than in the past. If fear or anxiety are the reasons you have avoided dental treatment please ask about your sedation dentistry, an anxiety-free, relaxing way to get the treatment you need.
By Mark Levy | September 23, 2010
Kentucky has long been a state with poor dental health – in 2002 it had the worst rate of toothlessness in adults 65 or older. That may be starting to change. A new law requires proof of a dental exam or screening by January 1st of the first year children enter school.
Dr. Ann Greenwell of the University of Louisville dental school said “Teeth start coming in around age 6 months, and that’s when the cavity process starts if parents aren’t cleaning the teeth and the diet is high in sugar. We’ve had 12-month-olds that have had abscessed, infected teeth.” Poor dental health in children affects their eating habits, nutrition and can lead to absenteeism and lack of focus in school. “A child who is sitting in class in pain cannot be focusing on what they are supposed to be learning.” says Dr. Charlotte Haney of the University of Kentucky College of Dentistry.
Dr. Haney goes on to explain that having neglected, decayed teeth “can affect your health and your ability to make money, present yourself well, eat well, be healthy, so we need to learn to value our teeth.”
At StoneRidge Dental Care we can help you achieve a healthy, beautiful smile. As Dr. Haney mentioned, a healthy smile affects all parts of your life, from your overall health to the type of job you are hired for. Since your smile is the first thing people notice when meeting you for the first time – shouldn’t your smile reflect youthful energy and good health no matter your age? Please contact+ my Columbus, Ohio office today at 614-476-6696 at to schedule your appointment.
If you have been avoiding dental care because of anxiety or fear please ask about dentistry with the “little pill”. You can have years of neglect corrected without anxiety. Ask about your options when you call! You deserve a healthy smile!
By Mark Levy | August 16, 2010
The majority of patients suffering from periodontal disease do not realize they have the condition. If you don’t get a dental checkup twice a year you may be well on your way to losing your teeth and increasing the odds that you will suffer from heart disease, stroke or diabetes. Since gum disease is preventable and easily treatable in the early stages it is important to know the signs.
The first noticeable symptom of periodontal disease is usually bad breath. This is not your typical “onions for lunch” bad breath. This is a chronic, foul odor that won’t go away even after brushing and flossing. If you have chronic bad breath you should also visit your physician to rule out diseases such as diabetes but since the majority of our population suffers from undiagnosed gum disease it is the most likely cause of the problem.
Healthy gums are a nice shade of pink. If your gums are red or purple and they appear to be swollen around your teeth you probably have periodontal disease.
Gums that are tender or sore and bleed easily are another sign. It is not normal for gums to bleed when brushing or flossing. Bleeding, sore gums are a sure sign of infection and you should seek treatment as soon as possible.
Pain when chewing can be another sign that periodontal disease is advancing. Pain that is felt only in one tooth can signal a cracked tooth or the need or a root canal. Pain that is spread throughout your mouth is more likely a sign of serious gum disease.
What happens if gum disease is not treated? Several things – the teeth will become loose, this causes the bone in the jaw to begin to deteriorate leading to eventual tooth and bone loss. Beyond your mouth, the chronic inflammation and infection spreads bacteria to other organs including the heart. If you are a woman of child-bearing age you should be aware that bacteria from infected gums have been found in amniotic fluid and linked to premature births.
Now that you know the signs of periodontal disease and how important healthy gums are for your smile and for the rest of your body it is time to to schedule your appointment. If the reason that you have been putting off treatment is due to fear or anxiety – don’t worry. Anxiety free care is available – just ask about it when you make your appointment. Please call my Gahanna, Ohio office at 614-476-6696 today to schedule your consultation.
By Mark Levy | August 5, 2010
New York University College of Dentistry researchers have found long-term evidence that periodontal disease may increase the risk of brain inflammation, neurodegeneration and Alzheimer’s disease. The research team looked at 20 years of data and what they found supports the idea of a possible link between periodontal disease and Alzheimer’s disease.
According to Dr. Angela Kamer, lead researcher “The research suggests that cognitively normal subjects with periodontal inflammation are at an increased risk of lower cognitive function compared to cognitively normal subjects with little or no periodontal inflammation.” Dr. Kamer found that subjects at age 70 with periodontal disease were nine times more likely to test in the lower range on a standardized test as compared to subjects with healthy gum tissue.
What does all this mean for us? This study is one more piece of information that links the importance of healthy gums and teeth to our overall well-being. Previous studies have confirmed the links between gum disease and heart disease, diabetes and even low birth-weight babies. This study adds brain function to that list.
The best advice for maintaining your overall health is to maintain a healthy mouth.
The reasons that patients use to avoid dealing with their gum disease vary but often include the following:
- Taking care of my gums is expensive. Prevention of, or treatment for, your gum disease is much less costly than the treatment of other illnesses that it can cause.
- It doesn’t hurt so it can’t really be that big a problem. If you had a large infected sore anywhere else on your body you would get it treated immediately – because gum disease is not obvious does not mean you can safely ignore it.
- I am anxious or afraid of visiting the dentist. Many of our patients fall into this category – we offer several options for making your visit more comfortable. Click here for more information about dentistry with the “little pill”. My team and I specialize in treating anxious patients.
A healthy smile contributes to a healthy life. Please contact us at 614-476-6696 today – conveniently located in Gahanna, Ohio.