Steven M. Levy, DMD

Diabetes and Dental Health

From 1980 through 2012, the number of adults diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S. nearly quadrupled from 5.5 million to 29.1 million, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dentists can play a major role in the diagnosis of diabetes and the reversal of this explosive trend.

Diabetes causes an increase in the prevalence of gum disease, also caused periodontitis, which is a bacterial infection. White blood cells are impaired and blood vessels thicken which slows the flow of nutrients to and waste products from body tissues, including the mouth. This combination of events reduces the body’s ability to fight infections, including periodontal disease.

Additionally, people with uncontrolled diabetes do not heal quickly after oral surgery or other dental procedures. Thrush, a fungal infection of the mouth, is also more prevalent in diabetics. Due to elevated blood sugar levels there can also be a significant increase in the rate of dental decay (cavities) that can lead to serious dental issues if left untreated.

For optimal dental health regular dental examinations and thorough cleanings are essential. Call our office today to avoid future dental complications and insure your oral health.

If you have any dental emergency, call Dr. Steven Levy, an emergency dentist, at 516-378-8600.

Causes of Tooth Sensitivity

Short lived tooth sensitivity, particularly cold sensitivity, is not normally a cause for concern. However, if the pain persists and appears to be limited to a particular tooth or area of your mouth it may be indicative of a crack in your tooth, a broken or degraded filling, a cavity or an infected nerve.

Pain upon chewing and to cold and heat can be a sign of an infected nerve that requires root canal therapy.

Sensitivity in your teeth can also be a sign of gum disease, also known as periodontal disease. This type of gum infection has the potential to destroy supporting bone and result in loss of teeth. Periodontal disease can result in gum recession and ultimately require cosmetic dentistry to restore a natural appearance.

Tooth grinding or clenching (bruxism), brushing too hard and chewing tobacco can also lead to sensitive teeth. Bruxism can be due to stress, sleep apnea or other problems. See our section on bruxism under our “services” pull-down menu.

If a tooth is sensitive due to a crack, ignoring it can lead to total fracture and loss of that tooth. Replacement often requires a dental implant or a dental bridge.

Solutions to tooth sensitivity can often be simple if the problems are addressed early. Therefore, if you are having any type of dental pain or toothache it is important that you call Dr. Steven Levy at your earliest convenience at 516-378-8600.

Bruxism (Teeth Grinding)

Most individuals are unaware that they grind or clench their teeth. It most often occurs during sleep and can sometimes be heard by one’s bed partner. This habit is so ingrained that often a person unknowingly grinds and clenches during the daytime too.

Teeth grinding and clenching is a harmful habit that can cause fractured and chipped teeth, tooth sensitivity, pain around the ears, jaw pain, tight jaw muscles, TMJ/TMD, headaches and can even change the appearance of your face.

Stress, antidepressants and sleep apnea among many things can exacerbate and/or cause tooth grinding.

These patients often come to our office seeking cosmetic dentistry in order to correct short, broken or chipped teeth. Others come in due to pain.

Mouth guards, dental sleep appliances and stress management are among the many therapies we employ to help these individuals.

If you suffer from bruxism or the chips, broken teeth and pain as a result of it,  please call our office, at 516-378-8600. Dr. Levy is a cosmetic dentist who has years of experience helping patients who suffer from this condition.

Seniors Who Sleep In Dentures At Higher Risk For Pneumonia

Thanks to community water fluoridation, fluoride toothpaste, daily brushing and improved professional dental care, a record of approximately 75 % of senior citizens over age 65 have kept some or all of their teeth.

A study in the Journal of Dental Research found that “very elderly adults (ages 85 and older) in community-living settings who slept in dentures were at higher risk of developing pneumonia because bacteria from the mouth could be inhaled into the lungs.”

If you have dentures of any type they should be kept meticulously clean. Every night the dentures should be taken out, thoroughly brushed, soaked in a cleaning solution overnight and cleaned again in the morning.

Nitrous Oxide – Sweet Air – Laughing Gas

For those apprehensive patients who would like some relief from their dental anxieties, we have “sweet air” available. Nitrous oxide relaxes you and makes for a pleasant experience for those who need it.

If you require sweet air for your dental cleanings this service is available from our very excellent hygienists. They are licensed and have special training to administer it. Also, it may be administered by Dr. Steven Levy for one’s routine dental treatment.

If you have any special needs or concerns please feel free to candidly discuss them with us.

Cold Sores, Canker Sores and Pizza Burns

Have you ever gotten one of those unsightly, uncomfortable cold sores on your lips? You know, the kind that makes you feel everyone you meet is staring at. Or have you ever gotten a painful canker sore? Or a bad pizza burn on the roof of your mouth? Usually those things hang around for a week or two.

However, our office now has the latest in dental lasers, called a diode laser. Laser light emitted from the diode laser gently accelerates healing through a process called “biostimulation”. After just a few minutes bathing in laser light, cold sores, canker sores and pizza burns are no longer painful and on their way to healing completely in just a few days.

The next time you have a painful sore in your mouth or on your lips give Dr. Steven Levy a call and you’ll be feeling better that day!

Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction

Temporomandibular joint dysfunction, also known as TMJ or TMD, is an umbrella term describing a disfunction in the joint that connects your lower jaw to your skull and/or a disfunction in the muscles of mastication. Common symptoms are pain, limited ability to open one’s mouth, and noise from the temporomandibular joint.

While women are more commonly affected than men, 20% to 30% of the population has been affected at one time or another in their lives. When someone experiences longterm chronic episodes of TMJ pain their entire lifestyle can be affected.

There are multiple factors which are not well understood that can cause this painful syndrome and many treatments available. Fortunately, the majority of cases respond well to conservative treatment.

If you or someone you know is affected by temporomandibular joint dysfunction Dr. Steven Levy can help you feel comfortable once again. Please give our office a call at 516-378-8600 to set up a convenient appointment.

Emergency Dental Care

With the summer month upon us, patients are sometimes concerned that their healthcare provider will be away or out of reach when they’re needed the most. Should a dental emergency arise please rest assured that Dr. Levy is your emergency dentist. He is available 24/7. After hours he can be contacted if you have a dental emergency by calling our office, 516-378-8600.

A New Office is Planned

Over the years my Team and I have been listening to your requests and recommendations regarding our physical facilities. We have made every effort possible to fulfill them given the constraints of our present leased site. While we have always taken pride in its cleanliness, tasteful décor and convenient location, it has been apparent that there is more we could do for our patients.

Therefore, it is with great excitement that I announce our plans for a new, thoroughly modern office just a few blocks from our present location at the corner of Merrick Road and Babylon Turnpike. It will have all the conveniences, comfort, bells and whistles you’ve been asking for.

Whether it’s in Rome or in the Town of Hempstead, nothing is built in a day. A long process is anticipated, and we will keep you informed of the progress.

Thank you all for your loyalty, referrals and support over the years. Without you a new office facility would not be possible.

Steve Levy, D.M.D. and Team

Continuing Education: Dental Implants

I’m excited to be attending a symposium on dental implants, in Boston, on Wednesday, October 9, 2013. The office will be open tomorrow, Tuesday, October 8th from 8 AM until 12 PM. My Team will be in the office for several hours on Wednesday to take calls and schedule appointments. If any of our patients need either to speak with me or require an immediate referral for an emergency, I will be on-call 24/7, as usual.

Looking forward to a great day of learning.

Dr. Steve Levy