Mountain View Dental Recruits New Dentist
Zachary Reiff has focus on treating patients with sleep apnea
EASTHAMPTON—Mountain View Dental has hired a third dentist, Zachary Reiff of South Hadley, a 2015 Southern Illinois University School of Dental Medicine graduate who brings a focus in treating patients with sleep apnea and other sleep disorders.
On Aug. 12, Reiff joined dentists Seth Eichenlaub and Michael Szostak at the practice. Eichenlaub has worked at Mountain View Dental since 2010 and Szostak for 34 years. Reiff brings the total number of staff at the practice to 15.
“We’re very happy to have recruited Zach,” said Eichenlaub. “He’s a very talented dentist and will no doubt complement our practice with his unique skillset that includes his expertise in sleep medicine.”
Reiff takes the work of fitting patients with a dental appliance to treat a sleep disorder to a level he said is uncommon in dentistry; he partners with a sleep physician to ensure that the appliance he created is effective in improving the patient’s sleep pattern and, thus, overall health.
He learned this approach from his brother Mark, a sleep physician in North Carolina.
Reiff begins the process of working with a patient on a sleep issue by obtaining his or her sleep study prescription from their physician. After a conversation about insurance and cost, he makes impressions, from which the dental appliance is created.
“There are 180 different devices and based on what the patient is experiencing, we custom select the appropriate appliance,” he explained. “These devices, which look like clear retainers, are typically for people who don’t want to or can’t use a CPAP machine.”
Once a patient is fitted for an appliance, Reiff conducts a sleep study, and when he is satisfied the device is working, he refers the patient back to the physician for a final study and medical evaluation. “We don’t send them off and say, ‘Good luck,’” Reiff said. “We need to make sure it’s doing what it should be doing, which is ensuring that someone is still breathing at night.”
Reiff hopes to learn more about sleep apnea as his career advances.
He said Mountain View Dental’s reputation for providing quality dental care with compassion is what attracted him to move to this area from Virginia, where he worked at the Morrison Dental Group in Williamsburg for the past two and a half years. Reiff and his wife, Rebecca, now live in South Hadley.
He said he and Mountain View Dental both have a patient-centered approach. “I’m looking forward to working with an experienced, cohesive team at an office that has good staff retention,” he said.
“It is critical to create a mutual relationship of trust between dentist and patient,” Reiff added, noting he understands peoples’ anxiety about dentistry and works to have a light demeanor with patients. “I’ve been in the chair quite a bit in my own life, including having eight teeth removed at the same time, so I can empathize with what they’re experiencing.”
Mountain View Dental was founded over 50 years ago by solo practitioner Joseph Zilewicz in its current location of 5 Campus Lane in downtown Easthampton. Staff specialize in all aspects of general dentistry including implant restoration, child dentistry, root canals, extractions, dentures, cosmetic work and, now, producing dental appliances for sleep apnea patients.
Eichenlaub said Mountain View Dental is well-respected in the community. “Our patients are our neighbors and friends,” he said. “We’ve created an environment where we help patients arrive at a decision that best fits their needs. We do cosmetic work, but our practice is more about keeping people healthy.”