Dr. Sonia Gutierrez, DDS., MS.
Hello, my name is Dr. Sonia, and I started Kids Dentist back in 1994, when my first child was only 6 months old.
I graduated at the top of my class in dental school from the Health Sciences University in my native Colombia, in 1986, then in 1989 I completed my training in Pediatric Dentistry from the University of Illinois at Chicago. A year later I received a Master of Science degree from the same university.
I’m board certified in pediatric dentistry and a Diplomate of the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. This certification represents the highest possible credentials within the pediatric dental field. Less than 50% of all pediatric dentists attain this level of expertise. I have served as a board member and as President of The Illinois Society of Pediatric Dentistry, and I am a member of the American Dental Association, The Illinois State Dental Society, and The Chicago Dental Society.
I love taking care of children because they are genuine and loving, honest and fun. I take my time with each child, teaching them about oral health and how to take care of their mouth, while also helping them realize that going to the dentist doesn’t have to be scary or hard. It’s exciting to watch each patient grow up, see their personalities develop as they become young adults, then have to say goodbye as they move on to an adult dentist. To be honest, as someone who tends to form strong attachments to my patients, that can be hard on us both.
I feel it is essential to stay up to date with new technologies, concepts, and techniques related to pediatric dentistry, which is why I participate in continuing education courses throughout the year. This ensures I am able to provide my patients with the most effective, proven, and gentle care available.
When I’m not working or studying, I spend time with my family, including my husband, two daughters, and son. I’m passionate about women’s education and empowerment, and am equally passionate about travel. There’s nothing quite like exploring the world, learning new things, and meeting new people!
Dr. Dave Rutcosky
Hello. I’m Dr. Dave, as my patients call me, and I love providing gentle, thorough dental care to my young patients. I have two children of my own, Caroline and Matthew, so knowing how a kid’s mind works makes it easier for me to really connect with those in my care. I take time to explain treatments and procedures in a way that a child can understand what’s going to happen and why it needs to be done. I also try to get kids to open to me and ask questions; their natural curiosity is the perfect opportunity to educate them about their oral health and why it’s so important.
I received my undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois and my dental degree at Northwestern University, and then served a pediatric dentistry residency at the University of Illinois. I’m passionate about being able to provide my patients with the best care available, so I actively pursue continuing education opportunities, and seek to expand my skills and knowledge. I’m particularly interested in behavior management techniques, with an emphasis on caring for children with special needs.
When I’m not at work, I enjoy spending time with my wife Helen and our kids. I also like cooking and love going fishing. Oh, and I follow all the Chicago sports teams, of course!
Dr. Sahar Alrayyes
Dr. Sahar Alrayyes earned her dental degree from Northwestern University Dental School in 1998. In 2002, she received a certificate of Pediatric Dentistry from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where she also completed her Master’s degree in Oral Science.
In addition to being part of the Kids dentist’s team, she is a full time Clinical Associate professor and the Clinic Director at the University of Illinois, Department of Pediatric Dentistry. She is board certified by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry and serves on the examining committee for the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry. She is a member of several national and international associations and societies. She has served as the President of the Illinois Society of Pediatric Dentistry; on the editorial Board of Dentistry for Children; the councilor for the Pediatric Dentistry section at the American Dental Education Association, and is the President of the Omicron Kappa Upsilon Honorary Dental Society, Sigma chapter
Dr. Alrayyes also travels to provide volunteer pediatric dental care to children in underprivileged countries, and has lectured nationally and internationally.