Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is multifactorial, with sleep disturbances linked to its pathology. A growing body of research in Alzheimer’s is focused on finding interventions that could potentially slow the process of cognitive decline in aging.
Preliminary findings from a recent study published in the journal Geriatrics suggest that reducing snoring—in this case, with an oral appliance—is tied with improved cognition.
An oral appliance is a custom-made device made by a dentist who has special training in dental sleep medicine. This training qualifies them to evaluate and treat, upon appropriate diagnosis, snoring, and obstructive sleep apnea using one of these special devices. They gently bring the jaw forward at night and are fabricated for each individual.
The study, led by researchers from the Center for BrainHealth at The University of Texas at Dallas and Texas A&M University, is promising but included only 18 individuals. A more extensive longitudinal study is planned to expand on these initial findings.
Knowing that there is such a defined link between snoring, sleep issues, Alzheimer’s disease, and other cognitive deficits, don’t we have the obligation to treat everyone who snores? The best opportunity to determine if a patient is first a candidate for an oral appliance and second actually has snoring or obstructive sleep apnea is to be seen by someone specially trained in dental sleep medicine.
Fortunately, at Dental Professionals we have Dr. Schwartz and Dr. Katz who have years of experience. In fact, Dr. Schwartz is the current president of The American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine and has authored numerous articles and lectured internationally as one of the foremost experts on the subject.
If you or a loved one would like to discuss this most important health concern, please give the office a call and set some time up to be evaluated and help put your mind to rest!
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The Chicago area’s leading full-service dental practice further expands capabilities in unique specialty
“I’m thrilled to join forces with this outstanding group of professionals to offer patients my skills in sleep medicine alongside their exceptional, personalized oral healthcare,” says Dr. Schwartz. “I fully share their commitment to providing the highest quality treatment with advanced technology solely focused on enhancing patient comfort and outcomes.”
A practicing dentist since 1988, Dr. Schwartz is the current President of the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine (AADSM), the preeminent organization dedicated to this type of patient care. He is one of a limited group of dentists in the country to be awarded the designation of Diplomate of the American Board of Dental Sleep Medicine. A pioneer in the field, Dr. Schwartz is regarded as one of the nation’s foremost experts and lecturers and works to educate other healthcare professionals on best practices as well as direct future research.
Dental sleep medicine centers on oral appliance therapy (OAT), a clinically proven treatment for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and snoring. Worn at bedtime, similar to a nightguard or retainer, the appliance is designed to counter breathing obstruction by maintaining an open airway, stabilizing the tongue and jaw, and preventing any collapse that leads to blockage. Compared to CPAP machines traditionally used to treat sleep apnea, an oral appliance is less invasive, more comfortable, and easier to use and maintain, according to Dr. Schwartz.
“A custom-fit oral appliance allows people who suffer from symptoms of sleep apnea to experience uninterrupted, continuous breathing through the night,” says Dr. Schwartz. “Improving sleep in this way has a profound impact on a patient’s overall well-being, helping to restore alertness and revitalize health.”
A graduate of the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Dentistry, Dr. Schwartz completed postdoctoral continuing education focused on treating OSA, and is a strong supporter of advanced medical training for all who practice dental sleep medicine.
“Our collective mission at Dental Professionals is to go beyond dentistry,” he says, “and this describes my approach perfectly. Providing the best treatment for OSA involves much more than simply placing an oral appliance. We consider it in the context of a medical disease – one with a high likelihood of comorbidities.”
It is estimated that 40 million U.S. adults have undiagnosed or untreated obstructive sleep apnea, which increases their risk of health complications such as hypertension, congestive heart failure, atrial fibrillation, coronary artery disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
Dr. Schwartz has authored numerous articles for professional publications including the Journal of Dental Sleep Medicine (JDSM), Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine (JCSM), and Dental Sleep Practice (DSP) Magazine. In his role as AADSM president, Dr. Schwartz crafted an influential policy statement published in JDSM recommending the prescription of oral appliances as first-line therapy during the pandemic for sleep apnea, stating that CPAP therapy potentially exposed other individuals in close proximity to the patient to an increased risk of transmission of COVID-19. Other key writings include:
- JDSM- 2019-Definition of an Effective Oral Appliance for the Treatment of Obstructive Sleep Apnea and Snoring: An Update for 2019
- JDSM 2019-Oral Appliance Therapy Should be Reimbursed After CPAP Intolerance
- JDSM- 2018 Dental Sleep Medicine Standards for Screening, Treating and Managing Adults with Sleep-Related Breathing Disorders
- JDSM-2017 Management of Side Effects of Oral Appliance Therapy for Sleep Disordered Breathing
- DSP-2015- “Eenie Meenie Miney Moe” an article on the selection criteria for oral appliances
- JCSM-2014-“Sleep Medicine Care Under One Roof: A Proposed Model for Integrating Dentistry and Medicine
Dr. Schwartz’s recent lectures include:
- Covid and Dental Sleep Medicine an AADSM Review-March 2021
- American Academy of Dental Boards-An Overview of Dental Sleep -April 2021
- Missouri Sleep Society-Dental Sleep Medicine Overview-April 2021
- Prosomnus-Voice of the Customer – April 2021
- Somnomed Summit- Key Opinion Leaders- May 2021
- Fundamentals in Device Design/MAD Personalization-2021
- SEMDES-Playing in the Sand Box Together-November 2020
About Dental Professionals
The top-rated Dental Professionals are dedicated to a mission of going “Beyond Dentistry” to enhance patients’ overall healthcare and personal well-being. A full-service oral healthcare provider, Dental Professionals offers expertise ranging from dental implants to cosmetic veneers, crowns to full mouth reconstruction. Comprehensive general dental care and specialist treatments for complex needs, including Dr. Schwartz’s oral appliance therapy for sleep apnea, are provided onsite at both Dental Professionals locations in downtown Chicago and the suburban North Shore.
Suffering From Obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Surgically Clean Air (Photo credit: Unsplash/Surgically Clean Air)
Dental Office in Chicago with Air Purifier & Air Filtration Systems
As we’ve reopened our practice in the midst of COVID-19, we’ve taken extensive measures to ensure the health and safety of our staff and our patients. In addition to extra layers of personal protective equipment, new in-chair practices, limited appointments, front desk sneeze guards, and more in-depth communication between our office and our patients, we are now taking progressive measures to sterilize the air for a germ-free environment with surgically clean air.
So, what exactly is “surgically clean air”?
In a normal, unfiltered room, impurities (like dust, dirt, skin cells, and allergens) and microorganisms (mold, bacteria, fungus, and viruses) pollute the air we breathe. However, our new medical-grade filtration system will purify and re-energize the indoor air, removing 99 percent of all those impurities.
How exactly does this work?
In our practice, we’ll be using a medical-grade six-stage filtration system to capture dust particles, pollen, volatile organic chemicals, gases, mold, allergens, viruses, odors (like formaldehyde and smoke), bio-aerosols, and many other pollutants. This is not your average filtration system. Independent lab testing (RTI) have found Surgically Clean Air Purifiers to successfully removes 99 percent of indoor air pollutants (viruses, bacteria, fungus, etc.) in under 15 minutes. In our office, every cubic foot of air in the practice will be cleaned, purified, and re-energized 6 times an hour.
Why is this important to Dental Professionals?
We know these are strange, stressful times and we want our patients to not only be protected and safe but to have peace of mind when they enter and leave our office.
An added perk of surgically clean air!
You may even feel more awake after your appointment as the negative ion generator makes the indoors feel more pure, clean, and energized to help combat fatigue.
Online dental consults are now live at Dental Professionals!
Telemedicine, or in this case teledentistry, is the technology that allows your doctor or dentist to remotely provide an exam for you wherever you are in the world. Essentially, you chat with your provider over live video—it’s similar to using Skype, Facetime, WhatsApp, or Zoom. All you need is a device or computer with a camera. At Dental Professionals, we are proud to now provide this service.
About our system:
- It’s user friendly and intuitive—no training or special web skills needed.
- It’s HIPAA-compliant so your information is secure.
- It allows you to upload photos.
- It’s powered by the professional version of Zoom, so the controls are already familiar to many.
- It works from your phone, tablet, or desktop computer with camera.
- You can request that other people be present as well (spouse, children, etc.)—they can join from their own device and participate in the discussion too!
What appointment types can be scheduled this way?
- Emergency exams (especially when coming into the office is difficult or impractical)
- Follow-up visits (for example, a follow-up after implant surgery)
- Cosmetic dental consultations
- Gummy smile consultations
- Second opinions (for certain situations)
- Treatment conferences (i.e. discuss details of recommended treatment)
Notably, most dental insurance companies cover a teledental visit the same way they would cover an in-office visit. Every plan is different, so check with your insurance provider if you have questions specific to your situation.
How does it work?
- After you request an appointment, our team will contact you to schedule.
- You will receive an invite via email or text, as well as reminders.
- Prior to your appointment, the link in the email or text brings you to a virtual reception room.
- If you don’t have Zoom installed on your device, the program prompts you and completes this (note, you don’t have to do anything in Zoom—the program all runs on its own).
- In the reception room, you can sign the short consent form and have the option to upload photos
- At your appointment time, your doctor initiates the visit!
You can also request a video consult by calling or emailing either of our office locations. We’d love to see you in person but are excited to offer this convenient option to save you time and possibly avoid unnecessary trips to the office!
Newsflash: all floss is not created equal. That’s why our doctors and hygienists have spent years testing out virtually every product out there, learning which products help our patients and their personalized needs because not everyone needs the same product. Here, our team lays out the best dental floss for every type of patient and mouth. We’re not paid by any companies to promote these products. We just want each of you to find what works best for your mouth and help you stay as healthy as possible. And c’mon, we’re dentists: we love floss.
But first, why do we need floss in the first place?
It’s simple—dentists all agree that patients who floss regularly have healthier gums. They have less bleeding, bone loss, and inflammation. Dr. Paul Katz sums it up nicely: “Over the years, I’ve frequently asked patients with healthy gums what they do to keep them so perfect. Besides visiting us at Dental Professionals, they all floss regularly! It didn’t matter so much which type of floss they used, it was the fact that they used it!” That said, different mouths can get an extra benefit by being paired with the ideal floss. That’s what we aim to help you do here.
When was your last teeth cleaning?
The 10 Best Dental Floss Choices for Every Purpose
1. The Hygienist Favorite Dental Floss: Cocofloss
Multiple hygienists on the Dental Professionals team raved about this product and use it themselves as their go-to floss at home. Made from coconut, the texture is thick and fibrous. Zhanna likes that it doesn’t shred and loves the variety of flavors, saying “it comes in mint, different fruit flavors, chocolate, and even gelato.” The team agrees that the flavors are pleasant but not overpowering. Daniella says Cocofloss is her “absolute favorite. I’ve tried several brands but always come back to Cocofloss.” Cocofloss offers subscriptions for easy refills. The only negatives mentioned were that due to the thickness, it can be difficult to use in very tight contacts between teeth, as well as that it is not easily found in stores. It’s also cruelty-, paraben-, SLS- and PFAS-free!
2. Classic-Brand Favorite: Johnson & Johnson Listerine Floss (formerly Reach Floss)
If one of our hygienist’s favorite floss wasn’t Cocofloss, then it was Listerine Floss, by Johnson and Johnson (formerly called Reach Dental Floss). Carrie, a Dental Professionals hygienist of 22 years, uses this as her personal floss, saying she feels “the lighter wax coating wipes plaque off better.” Ator, who’s been with our team for over 10 years as a hygienist, said of Listerine Floss: “I like how it stretches. It’s one of my favorites!”
3. The Best Dental Floss for Tight Contacts: Oral-B Glide Pro-Health
Glide is a well-known floss for a reason—it easily slides between teeth due to a very smooth texture. It is effective at plaque removal, gently stimulates gums, and features a light layer of natural wax to help with grip.
4. The Best Dental Floss for Braces or Bridges: Superfloss
Superfloss is an essential tool for patients with traditional braces, bonded wire retainers, and/or bridges replacing missing teeth. Each piece of Superfloss has three different parts—a stiff end for easy threading, a thicker spongy section, and a section of “regular” floss. The pieces are pre-measured and come in multi-packs. We even use these in the office for these same patients—there really is nothing better!
5. Best Dental Gluten-Free & Vegan Floss: Boka Floss
Boka Floss is made with vegetable wax, as well as being PTFE-free (i.e. Teflon-free) and petroleum-free. Our hygienist Elizabeth loves it, saying it provides a “thorough, satisfying clean.” Similar to brands like Quip (which I don’t actually recommend) or Cocofloss, Boka offers subscriptions on top of one-time purchases so you never run out.
6. The Best Dental Floss for Overachievers: Dr. Tung’s Smart Floss
Italian-made Dr. Tung’s Smart Floss comes in a biodegradable container, is lightly waxed with vegetable and bee’s wax, and is gluten-, PTFE- and BPA-free. It even promises to remove up to 55% more plaque than regular waxed or PTFE flosses—we told you it was for overachievers. Dr. Jacobs notes that “internal studies on plaque removal differences between brands must be taken with a grain of salt, but Dr. Tung’s has been very effective for our patients who’ve tried it.”
7. The Best Clean Dental Floss: Risewell Floss
There are endless choices when one searches for natural or chemical-free flosses. These three (Boka, Dr. Tung and Risewell) flosses, however, have been researched and critically tested by our team, winning their approval. Risewell is especially unique as it offers hydroxyapatite-infused dental floss, designed to help remineralize the surfaces between teeth, which is an important part of preventing tooth decay from dietary acid. It features vegan wax and is also PTFE- and petroleum-free.
8. The Best Soft Pick: The Humble Co. Floss Picks
For our patients who prefer soft picks, our hygienist Elizabeth recommends floss picks from The Humble Co. These picks are double-threaded for better plaque removal, made of eco-friendly corn starch, and come in two shapes for better access.
9. Best for People Who Don’t Want to (or Can’t) Floss: The Hydro Floss Oral Irrigator
In our practice, we do strongly believe in the effectiveness of oral irrigators that ALL patients who undergo Perio 360 gum disease treatment are given one. Amazingly, we’ve also discovered that a significant number of patients who, for various reasons, just cannot integrate flossing into their daily routine almost unanimously like oral irrigators. Hydro Floss irrigators are what we primarily recommend, as they use magnets to ionize water—which studies show decreases plaque and calculus accumulation.
10. The Best Compact Irrigator Option: The Cordless Waterpik Water Flosser
Similar to the Hydro Floss, this product is great for patients who aren’t able to integrate regular flossing into their lives. Waterpik offers a few versions of this product, but this one is specifically great for folks who maybe aren’t in the same place every night or don’t have too much counter space.
But which floss do the dentists at Dental Professional prefer?
Dr. Jacobs: “I use Glide Pro-Health (Oral-B brand). It’s smooth during use and easy to find in stores (you can buy it in bulk at Costco) I also use a Hydrofloss oral irrigator—even after brushing and flossing, it’s amazing what you can ‘power-wash out of your teeth.”
Dr. Finkel: “I use one of the many samples I always have coming into the office—it’s not so much which floss, but ensuring flossing happens at all. Given a choice, I use a medium thickness, unwaxed floss.”
Schedule your next teeth cleaning and dental exam today!
Tags: best dental floss
Dr. Amy Doneen of the BaleDoneen Method just published another wonderful piece on the critical importance of gum health and oral health. This is probably one of the best lay summaries of the risks that infected gums pose to HALF OF ADULTS over 30 years old. It’s a quick read, so definitely check it out.
The good news, at Dental Professionals we have been carrying out the bacterial testing she recommends for over three years! It’s a key part of our Perio 360 protocol.
Chicago Magazine – Dental Professionals Selected as Among Best Dentists in Chicago
We are proud to announce that each of the doctors at Dental Professionals has been selected by their peers as among the most outstanding dentists and specialists in Chicago. Chicago Magazine works to survey thousands of licensed dentists in the area and find out which in their field they trust to take care of their family and friends’ dental needs. It’s an honor to again be on this list.
Below you can see our featured write-up from 2017’s Top Dentists issue:
Are you looking for the best dentists Chicago has to offer?
Schedule your next appointment with us!
With the success of subscription shaving supplies, it was only a matter of time before a similar sales model was tried for oral health. A number of companies are attempting this, the most visible of which is Quip.
I personally see Quip ads all over my Facebook newsfeed and elsewhere online. This may be targeted marketing, as my searches tend dentally, but I hear from non-dentist friends that they see them too.
Curious, I recently got my hands on a Quip brush and tried it out for a weekend. Full disclosure, I am a dedicated Sonicare user of 10+ years. As a fourth-generation dentist, at some point, I’ve had just about every make of manual brush, as well as an Oral-B electric brush in the past.
The Positive: Appearance. The design of Quip is quite attractive. The brush is comfortable to hold and pretty to look at. The suction feature is slick – not sticky when you touch it, but easily grips to my mirror or other smooth surfaces. The travel cover idea is nice too. Unfortunately…that’s really the only remarkable feature of Quip—it’s a nice-looking toothbrush.
Negative 1: Function. Touted as an electric brush, Quip is essentially a manual brush that happens to gently vibrate a little. For manual brushers, it adds a little effect, and for Sonic brushers, the “hold the brush in place and let it do the work method” does not work. It’s confusing really. Of course, these small vibrations feel better to some users (versus the Sonic brushes) because they are so delicate, but unfortunately delicate isn’t as effective in cleaning. Also, the bristle design is ineffective at reaching the distal (very back) side of the very back teeth.
Negative 2: Subscription. While it seems there are some loopholes, you are essentially paying a relatively high price to get average toothpaste and replacement brush tips every three months. You must also change the AAA battery on a similar schedule. Quip touts the lack of a rechargeable battery as a positive—I do not. A charged Sonicare easily makes it through a week or more of travel and doesn’t require buying, installing, and disposing of batteries.
Summary: If you have money to burn and want a glorified manual toothbrush, Quip may be for you. If you want the most effective cleaning and don’t need another subscription beyond Prime and Netflix, try a Sonicare (doesn’t need to be the highest-end model…they all use the same technology). Or better yet, at your next dental visit, ask your provider for what they feel would be the best brush for your specific needs.
My advice? Don’t get quipped.
Here are a couple of images of a Quip brush (green stripe) next to a Sonicare DiamondClean:
For more information, or to judge for yourself:
Are you looking for a great dental practice in Chicago?
Schedule your next teeth cleaning and dental exam today!
As of yesterday, our new site is live. We will be continuing to fill-in-the-blanks over the coming weeks, but are excited about a number of new features:
- mobile friendly – now easier to call us and navigate the site
- ADA compliant – you’ll see access to these unique features (like higher contrast and enlarged font size) at the bottom left of the website
- online patient registration – simple, HIPAA compliant, and saves you time at the office
- online specialist referral – others dentists and specialists can now refer you to our practice with a quick, secure portal
- appointment request module
We’d love your feedback and suggestions for continued improvement.
Aug 13th, 2017
Posted in Blog | Comments Off on Our New and Improved Website!