Gilles Lavigne, DMD, MSc, FRCD (oral med), PhD, is a full professor at the Faculty of Dental Medicine at the ‘Université de Montréal’ and adjunct professor at the Faculty of Dentistry, McGill University, Canada. He holds a Canada Research Chair in Pain, Sleep & Trauma (2007-2021). He was president of the Canadian Sleep Society and president of the Canadian Pain Society, co-founder and past director of the three research networks in Oral Health, Pain and on Placebo Mechanisms funded by the Fonds de la Recherche en Santé du Quebec and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).
In 2009 he received a doctoral honoris causa from the University of Zurich, Switzerland. He is a Fellow of the American College of Dentists and the Canadian Academy of Healthy Sciences. In 2018, he was appointed the title of member of the Order of Canada. He has authored over 220 scientific papers and was associated to the co-edition of 4 books: Principles & Practice of Sleep Medicine, Elsevier Saunders, 2016 (re edition for 2021); Sleep Medicine for Dentists: A practical overview. Quintessence, 2009 and 2020; Orofacial Pain – From Basic Science to Clinical Management. Quintessence, 2008; Sleep and Pain, IASP Press, 2007.Gilles Lavigne is internationally recognize for his experimental and clinical research projects on sleep bruxism and apnea, placebo mechanisms and traumatic brain injury related the interactions between sleep, pain and sleep disorders. He is also active in clinical teaching and hospital services in oral medicine, orofacial pain and related sleep disorders.
About 30 years ago dental sleep medicine became a realty. At that time, little evidences were available to understand sleep apnea and select best treatment. Sleep bruxism was an orphan in research. Meta-analyses were not available and genetic was emerging in sleep medicine. Many beliefs were challenge and nowadays, the management of an individual with obstructive sleep apnea, bruxism, TMD, GERD, neurological and mood issues is not following a ‘one-size fits all’ approach. We have to listen, judge, analyses and take a decision before moving forward with a therapeutic technic. It is why it is challenging and rewarding to be a dental sleep medicine doctor. The amount of scientific evidences is exponential and somehow confused by ongoing debates. When I am with a patient, I have to elevate myself above these and think patient first: what is best base on best science and, what she or he will accept, be compliant with… Patients are my closest partners and most of the time, the best doctor!