Open Wide - The Official Blog of The Chicago Dental Society

Permanent link  CDS member Ted Borris joins CDS staff


Borris, Theodore

Longtime CDS member Theodore Borris has joined the CDS staff.

Dr. Borris will serve as Director of Scientific Programs beginning Jan. 5. Current Director of Scientific Programs Aloysius Kleszynski previously announced plans to retire Jan. 1. 

Dr. Borris holds degrees from Loyola University of Chicago, Northeastern Illinois University at the University of Illinois. He also served in the U.S. Air Force, teaching and working as a general dental officer at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas.

Locally, Dr. Borris maintained a private dental practice in Mt. Prospect. He served on the CDS Board of Directors, representing the Northwest Suburban Branch, and held leadership positions with the Illinois State Dental Society and the American Dental Association. 

We look forward to seeing more of him around the CDS HQ as he prepares to assume this new role.


cds members , cds staff , dental education ,

Permanent link  Mentorship luncheon supplements clinical education


2014 Mentorship LuncheonLongtime Chicago Dental Society volunteer Salvatore Storniolo held court over lunch. At a table filled with dental students, conversation included Game of Thrones, the Oscar nominees for Best Picture and the wisdom he’s gained through 26 years in dentistry.

“I think of myself in your shoes 27 years ago, and I can say it was scary. There were a lot of mixed emotions,” he told the students with whom he shared a lunch table. “But what you’ve got to realize is that it’s all there for the taking. You just need to figure out what kind of dentist you want to be. And you must get involved; networking is the key.”

Dr. Storniolo was one of many CDS volunteers who made time Thursday, Feb. 20, to attend the Mentor Luncheon. Held annually at the Midwinter Meeting , the event paired practicing dentists with dental students for camaraderie.

They agreed that their time together was a valuable part of their Midwinter Meeting experience.

“As dental students we spend so much time in class and lab, but there is no instruction on how to be a dentist in the real world,” said second year dental student Jeri McCombs, who lunched with dentist Victoria Ursitti. “That’s where organized dentistry comes in for students. It’s really neat to meet people at events like this and talk about tangible career goals.”

Dr. Ursitti agreed that networking events like the Mentorship Luncheon would have enhanced her experience as young dentist; she volunteers today so that others benefit from her experience.

“It would have been nice to have had someone to ask ‘what do you use for scheduling software?’ or ‘what kind of clinical software do you like?’ Running a business is not just clinical,” Dr. Ursitti said. “The personal contacts here are fantastic, but as a young dentist I think you need someone to put their arm out and invite you to do something, and I think I have a lot of offer in that way.”

Second year dental student Shauvik Ponnusamy found that kind of camaraderie in his relationship with CDS member Dean Nicholas. Mr. Ponnusamy shadowed Dr. Nicholas in the office to supplement his clinical instruction; he most enjoyed the way Dr. Nicholas interacts with patients.

“He makes everyone laugh,” Mr. Ponnusamy said. “It was great to see how he made connections with patients, which is not something they teach in dental school. And when we started endo at school, it was nice to hear him say ‘it’s going to be okay, there is a light at the end of the tunnel,’ and hear his reassurance and feel that camaraderie.”

Mr. Ponnusamy encouraged his peers to seek out the mentorship program.

“Take initiative. Small steps make a big difference in learning about how to manage outside of class when it comes to things like finances and debt and continuing education.”

His classmate Punita Shukla agreed.

“You can’t do one without the other: go to school and talk to a mentor. This is the base for your future,” she said.

Find more photos from this and other 2014 Midwinter Meeting events on Flickr.


cds members , dental education , dental school , meetup , midwinter meeting ,

Permanent link  ASDA conference supplements class time


With school back in session, dental students across the country have immersed themselves in gross anatomy, pathology and histology. While classroom and clinical experiences prepare you to be a dentist who provides quality care to patients, the American Student Dental Association supplements your learning and prepares dentists to also be successful business owners, managers and public speakers. Consider participating in ASDA’s National Leadership Conference to start developing the skills not always taught in dental school.

The National Leadership Conference is Nov. 15-17 in Chicago, with a wide variety of courses to choose from. Participants may consider following a track during their conference:

  • ASDA & Organized Dentistry
  • Career Planning & Business Leadership
  • Advocacy, Politics & Professional Issues
  • Chapter Leadership & Management

 Also on site, participants may participate in:

  • Group discussions about licensure and other issues affecting dentists, how to balance school and life, and strategies to market yourself as a young dentist.
  • Networking opportunities with other students and leaders within organized dentistry. Use this time to swap stories, share advice and make connections with people who live where you want to practice.
  • An exhibit fair with more than 70 companies showcasing products and services.

 Registration continues through Oct. 1, at



dental education , dental school ,

Permanent link  Dental student's posters helps patients understand dental X-rays


Connecticut dental student Jevin Carruth knows that an increasing number of patients are questioning the safety of dental x-rays. His challenge, however, was to find a simple answer that would put patients at ease.

He sought information from sources like the American Nuclear Society to show the amount of radiation given off by dental X-rays compared to other common sources of radiation, such as a cross-country flight. He added visual elements to illustrate complicated scientific principles for common use, and he laminated it for repeated reference in the dental office. His poster, "Radiation Facts" compares dental X-rays to sunlight, breathing, and a full-body CT scan.


Today, Mr. Carruth is selling this illustration to clinicians the country. Posters and handouts are available in three colors for purchase in packages ranging from $15-$100, with 10 percent of sales to CDS members benefitting the Illinois Mission of Mercy. 

For more information contact Mr. Carruth, UCONN School of Dental Medicine Class of 2015, at

Remind him that you learned about it from CDS, so that the Illinois Mission of Mercy benefits from your purchase.



consumer products , dental education , patient , products , xrays ,

Permanent link  Support Healthy Kids with $15 today


If you’re thinking about National Children’s Dental Health Month, you’re not alone. The Chicago Dental Society Foundation has plans, too, for the Healthy Kids Brush Up! program – and they need your help.

This campaign puts toothbrushes, toothpaste and volunteer dentists in local classrooms to encourage better oral hygiene habits among students. Nearly 200 schools will receive more than 56,000 toothbrushes next month — paid for in part by donations from our CDS members and other friends of the CDS Foundation.

Help us extend the program through your donation today. Your $15 gift will provide a whole classroom with toothbrushes, toothpaste, and educational materials to make them meaningful.

Please donate now. And share the link on your Facebook Page and Twitter feed to further our fundraising efforts.

(The fundraising page also has buttons in the upper right hand corner to help you share the page via email to your friends and associates or on your Pinterest page, but we don't want to be greedy...)


access to care , cds foundation , children , dental education , oral health , philanthropy , social media ,