We all tell “little white lies” from time to time…

For example: Apple thinks I actually read their Terms and Conditions before clicking ‘agree’, and most of my friends are under the impression that I have never seen an episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians. And yet here I sit, uncertain if my iPhone is spying on me, but absolutely convinced that Khloe K and I would be BFF’s if she would only respond to my letters.

We all tell these small “untruths” in order to protect the few shards of our dignity that survived into adulthood. It starts to get ridiculous however, when we issue a bold-faced lie to the very people who can easily find out the truth. In this case, I am speaking about every check-up I’ve ever had with my dentist.

Does this sound familiar? “Of course I floss, doctor; once a day and twice on Sundays.” [You then pause for your dentist’s judgmental glare as a cloud of skepticism fills the room]

Let’s get real: I don’t floss… According to recent statistics, YOU don’t floss … In fact, the only one I know who does scrub between her teeth regularly is my 8-year-old golden retriever. AND that’s just because she’s usually within a “paws length” of her doggy dental treats; and because they taste like bacon.

We lie to our doctor’s about flossing because we’ve all been told that flossing is an essential element of our oral health regimen, and we feel bad for not doing it. Well, it’s looking like my fellow liars and I have one less thing to fib about because it seems like flossing may NOT be as big of a deal as we previously thought.

Why is the health your gums important?

When you talk about oral health with your doctor, the emphasis is usually on preventing cavities – however, your gums are equally as important. They play an integral role in your dental health as well as improving your overall well-being.

In most cases, swollen, sensitive, or bleeding gums are a sign of gum disease – regardless if you only notice occasional bleeding during brushing and/or flossing. Whatever the cause of aching, bleeding gums, there are steps you can take to reduce the damage and discomfort you are experiencing.

Why do our doctors tell us to floss?

As explained by Dr. Elizabeth Palermo of , “Cavities [and gum disease] … form when bacteria living in the mouth digest carbohydrate debris left on the teeth [and under the gums] after you eat.” Flossing can clear the spaces in your mouth where food debris accumulates, thereby depriving the (cavity and gum disease causing) bacteria of anything to digest. Pretty sound reasoning, right?

It turns out though, that the effectiveness of flossing has never actually been tested! The Dietary Guidelines for American’s, an agency under the federal Department of Health and Human Services, requires all of its recommendations to be “grounded in scientific evidence”. Flossing has failed to meet this standard. The Associated Press even took a look into this issue, and after reviewing 25 different studies, they found no definitive correlation between flossing and the prevention of oral disease.

Despite these revelations coming to light, most dentists are sticking to their guns on the flossing issue. Who knows? They might even be right in the end. And that’s the point: Although flossing has been a professionally trusted (and highly recommended) health practice for forty years, all of the data STILL isn’t in yet.


To floss or not to floss. That is the question – Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer the bleeding and discomfort of bleeding gums, or to take arms against a sea of unverified scientific claims with the help of your dentist.

The choice is yours.

Berryhill Dentistry

If you are looking for the best way to reinvigorate your smile – there is no substitute for an in-office consultation at Berryhill Dentistry. Through a stress-free conversation we will discuss your goals, and design an option that will fit your budget. Contact a member of the Berryhill Dentistry team today and stop bleeding gums in their tracks!



Porcelain Veneers

What is warmer, or more welcoming, than a flawless smile? A perfect set of white-sparkling teeth gives people an unforgettable first impression, and really shows off your health

However, it can be a never ending cause of shame if you are unsatisfied with the health of your mouth. An unattractive smile or crooked, yellow, teeth can make you seem drained or unfriendly. It can even sometimes make it seem as though you don’t care about your health!

Neglecting your oral dental hygiene can disrupt every facet of your life and even damage your self-esteem.  It is our goal to put you on the path to achieve a beaming smile and improved health.

Berryhill Dentistry is the premier provider of all of your cosmetic and general dentistry needs. Servicing the entire Syosset, New York area, John Cottone DMD and Carol Anne Schmitz DMD and their staff are dedicated to the wellbeing of your teeth and the ease of your treatment. Through the use of medical-grade porcelain dental veneers, Doctors Cottone and Schmitz of Berryhill Dentistry can help you to restore your smile, revive your health, and change your life.

You can be well on your way to realizing the smile you’ve always dreamt of by contacting a welcoming team member of Berryhill Dentistry at 516-921-1717, and making an appointment for an un-rushed consultation with one of our outstanding doctors. During a no-pressure discussion, they will help you to plan your treatment strategy, and offer recommendations based off of your unique needs.

Porcelain dental veneers can refresh almost any smile. It doesn’t matter if your teeth are stained, yellow, loose or gapped – we will find the most effective procedure for you and plan a approach that will fit your life. Using state-of-the-art dental techniques and technology, we will then provide you with a level of care that is unrivalled in the Syosset, NY area.

Do not hesitate to act on any medical procedure – it could jeopardize your health. The health of your mouth is no exception.

Common oral health problems like missing or discolored teeth have been proven to be linked to more serious illnesses, such as:

  • Malnutrition
  • Widespread Tooth Decay
  • Jaw Inflammation and Pain
  • Early Stage of Heart Attack and Stroke
  • Depression
  • Diabetes
  • Several Forms of Cancer

It is vital that you contact as soon as possible in order to ensure that your health is under the mindful-eye of a practiced dentist, like Doctors Cottone and Schmitz.

You’ve earned the kind of smile that can take the spotlight in a crowded room. At Berryhill Dentistry, we are committed to providing that for you. Witness the kind of tender care that everyone should experience, in a calm atmosphere that everyone will enjoy. Schedule an appointment with Syosset’s number one cosmetic dentists today by going to




Red wine lovers may think that dental stains are an unescapable side-effect of their drink of choice, but at Berryhill Dentistry, you can have your vino-soaked pearly whites back to their glistening selves in no time! Regular cleanings with a Berryhill Dentistry team member along with occasional in-office whitening treatments, can remove stains and return your smile to its former glory.

Are teeth stains permanent?

Thankfully, most dental stains do not last forever. Most in-office teeth whitening treatments effectively remove stains on your teeth from red wine, tea, or even coffee. However, you mustn’t forget that brushing your teeth twice daily, regular flossing, and keeping you dental appointments (once every 3-6months) is essential in order to maintain your most brilliant smile.

Stains are usually caused by foods and beverages that absorb into the porous layer beneath the enamel of your teeth; these – deeper – stains are typically more difficult to remove.

How does whitening remove dental stains?

Enamel is a hard, absorbent material – as we consume darkly colored drinks, staining pigments stay inside of the pores of the tooth. As these pigments collect through further consumption, your teeth will gradually become darker. In-office teeth whitening treatments removes the dark pigments from the pores of your tooth (teeth), thereby restoring a healthy shade.

What whitening options do I have?

At Berryhill Dentistry, we offer the best in-office whitening treatments available. Whether it is through conventional whitening gels, or advanced laser teeth whitening procedures, we can restore your smile back to two glistening rows of pearly whites, free from the reddish-purple hue after having a few glasses of pinot. Call 516-921-1717 to find out how!

Can you prevent wine from staining your teeth?

Here are some basic steps that you can take in order to prevent wine from staining your teeth:

  1. Rinse your mouth out with water after imbibing, but do not brush. Because alcohol his naturally acidic, brushing immediately after drinking can do a lot of damage to your teeth. Taking a couple of sips of water is just as effective, without doing any harm to your smile.
  2. Flossing, in addition to rinsing with clean water, will help to flush your teeth of the harmful alcohol. Also, this will help to remove the harmful sugars that are found in some wines, which can cause tooth decay and gum disease.
  3. Use mouthwash.  This will help to remineralize the teeth, fortify tooth enamel, and help to rinse your mouth much in the same way that water can.
  4. Use a straw. Although it may look a little odd if you are doing it in a public place, drinking your wine through a straw can help to reduce the damage that wine has on your teeth by bypassing them.

How can you fix the damage to your teeth from wine?

If you are looking for the best way to reinvigorate your smile, and correct the damage caused by drinking too much wine, coffee, or tea – there is no substitute for an in-office cleaning courtesy of Berryhill Dentistry. Through a press-free consultation we will discuss your goals, and design an option that will fit your budget. Contact a member of the Berryhill Dentistry team today and take back your glistening pearly-whites!



Are Oral Health Problems Dangerous?

Recently, a fascinating story was released which showed exactly how dangerous oral health problems (like gum disease) can become, if left untreated …

The Headline reads, “Father of Two Dies of Tooth Infection”. As strange as that sounds, it echoes what most dentists have been saying for years. To summarize the depressing tale: a 30-something (seemingly healthy), man was complaining of a toothache, yet refused to see his doctor. Within days, he was in so much pain that he was rushed by his family to the emergency room. Unfortunately, it was too late – his tooth ache had cause a massive infection that eventually spread to his lungs.

To many people, this news was shocking. The thought that a simple tooth ache could kill is almost too much to bare. Yet, it is now being understood that your mouth can act as a window into your general health – continuously gauging how well your body is functioning.

While “lethal gum disease” is – thankfully – very rare, your dentist can use your mouth to identify the early stages of many serious conditions which can be equally as fatal. But first, it is important to understand how a simple problem with your oral health can play havoc on your entire body.

Bad Oral Health can make it easier for you to get sick

The bacteria and microflora of the mouth serve as the front-line soldiers of your immune system. Considering that your mouth and throat are direct channels for harmful bacteria to enter the body, a virus that enters your mouth can do untold damage. It’s good to keep your mouth healthy in order to prevent a virus from taking a foot-hold inside of you, and if your mouth isn’t healthy, there is a good chance that you’ve noticed yourself getting sick more often.

Periodontal Disease and Cancer

In several studies, it has been found that most people who suffer from certain cancers had serious gum disease before their symptoms began to show. One study goes on to explain, “Oral-associated microbes are present in breast tumors … Periodontal disease, a common chronic inflammatory disorder, was associated with increased risk of postmenopausal breast cancer. Understanding a possible role of the oral microbiome in [breast cancer] could impact prevention.”

This study adds to previous research, which found that cold sores and gum inflammation could be linked to other serious health problems like cognitive dysfunction. Personally, I find most cognitive disorders to be particularly unsettling. If you are like me, then I would recommend taking your oral health care very seriously.

Things to watch for

First, what are “gum problems”? A gum problem – or Periodontal Disease  – is an infection in the mouth, typically resulting from inadequate cleaning of plaque and other bacteria after regular brushing. It is one of the most common issues treated by dentists, and statistically, there is a good chance that you have already battled this illness. Usually, gum disease appears as Gingivitis. Gingivitis occurs with a build-up of oral bacteria and causes inflammation, jaw discomfort, sore gums and bleeding of the mouth. If gingivitis is not addressed quickly, it can result in the more serious condition, Periodontitis. When the infection is permitted to reach this advanced stage, more uncomfortable symptoms appear that can do lasting damage to your smile.

At this stage, the gums will usually begin to pull away from your teeth, creating more bleeding and inflammation, and exposing gaps in between your pearly-whites. As the gaps in your smile continue to expand, the exposed areas are very susceptible to even more radical forms of infection.  Without treatment, Periodontitis will cause your teeth and jaw bone to weaken (if not dissolve) which could permanently damage your smile.

Since gum disease, gingivitis, and periodontitis all stem from an infection (albeit an oral one) there are major implications for the rest of your body if they are not treated.

How we help

As is the case with most life-threatening diseases (like cancer), early detection is the key. We here at Berryhill Dentistry have several options that could help to shine a light on these serious health concerns when they are still treatable. Schedule your appointment today to ensure your peace of mind tomorrow!

SOURCES: – periodontitis

We Should All Be Steady Flossin’ | Syosset Dentist

If you are listening to the kids these days, you may find that they will use the word flossin’. If you look it up in the dictionary, you’ll find that it means “showing off an object in which usually possesses great value”. Nothing to do with dental hygiene. And while we all know it is important to floss daily, it’s likely you’re calculating in your head how much you REALLY floss. Let’s go over why it’s so important to floss daily…

More effective than brushing alone. A toothbrush’s bristles can’t adequately clean between the teeth or under the gums. Flossing can get in those tiny spaces between your teeth to get the grime out your toothbrush can’t reach.

Protection for your gums. Particles of food can get lodged in between your gums and teeth, and plaque in this area will harden over time to form tartar. Tartar buildup can lead to gingivitis.

Disease prevention. Gum disease can have effects that go beyond discolored teeth, discomfort and bad breath. Research has shown that the bacteria in an unhealthy mouth can harm the rest of the body, leading to heart disease, diabetes and respiratory illness.

The American Dental Association recommends flossing at least once a day to achieve optimal oral health. The most important thing about flossing is to do it. Pick a time of day when you can devote an extra couple of minutes to your dental care. You may feel discomfort when you first start flossing, but don’t give up. With daily brushing and flossing, that discomfort should ease within a week or two. If your pain persists, talk to your dentist.

If you would like more information regarding flossing, contact Berry Hill Dentistry at 516-921-1717 today. Or visit our website at for additional information.

Berry Hill Dentistry proudly serves Syosset, NY and all surrounding areas.

The Ins and Outs of Tooth Decay | Syosset Dentist


We all do our best to keep our smile bright and shiny. Through the work of daily dental hygiene and regular trips to the dentist, it is easy to keep our smile healthy. But there may come a point where your dental appointment may reveal you’ve developed tooth decay. It may sound scary, but don’t worry – it can be prevented.

Tooth decay is the damage that results from bacteria acids in your mouth, eating away at the tooth. It is important to know that it is generally our habits that cause it, because it doesn’t happen overnight. Here are some contributors to tooth decay:

  • Not brushing and flossing regularly
  • Avoiding dental cleanings and check-ups
  • Consuming high sugar foods, energy drinks, alcohol
  • Smoking
  • Lack of saliva production

If you have any of these habits, it is wise to try to conquer them, not only for your smile but for your overall health. Now that you know how it develops, let’s take a look at the warning signs:

  • Toothache
  • Swelling in the gums around the bad tooth
  • Bad breath
  • Continual bad taste in your mouth
  • White, grey, brown or black spots on your teeth

Do you have any of these symptoms? If you think you do, it is important to schedule a dental appointment as soon as possible. Tooth decay left untreated will only develop into more dental issues in the future. When you visit the dentist, they will also be able to tell you whether or not you’re prone to tooth decay. This way you can take measures to prevent it in the future.

If you would like more information regarding tooth decay, contact Berry Hill Dentistry at 516-921-1717 today. Or visit our website at for additional information.

Berry Hill Dentistry proudly serves Syosset, NY and all surrounding areas.

Saliva Is Your Smile’s Best Friend | Syosset Dentist

Tooth decay is something that happens when bacteria feeds off of the sugars we are consuming through food and drink. This plaque latches on to your teeth and begins to eat through the enamel on your teeth. Generally, we are under the impression that by brushing our teeth after every meal, there isn’t much time for this oral menace to do a whole lot of damage. But even more than that, when the saliva glands are activated in our mouths, it actually helps rinse off the bacteria naturally.

So, what causes us to create this magical dental friend? Chewing. Every meal you eat, every snack you nosh on, every piece of bubble gum you chew is all helping to create the saliva that fights against germs and bad breath. But keep in mind, it takes 20 minutes for sugar to be cleared from your mouth after its consumption. Sugar-free gum and candy is a great solution, but so is a handy bottle of water. Keeping a nice balance will not only get those salivary glands working, but will also help out the cause when you don’t have a toothbrush handy.

Saliva is your mouth’s first line of defense when it comes to keeping your mouth healthy. It is nature’s disinfecting cavity fighter. Make sure you’re doing everything you can to keep your teeth healthy, both at home and when visiting a dental professional. You don’t have to brush your teeth…Just the ones you want to keep!

If you would like more information regarding saliva production, contact Berry Hill Dentistry at 516-921-1717 today. Or visit our website at for additional information.

Berry Hill Dentistry proudly serves Syosset, NY and all surrounding areas.