When it comes to dental care, it is best to find a dentist you trust and feel comfortable with. Since dental care is a very personalized service, it is beneficial to see the same dentist regularly. Overtime your dentist will get to you know you and your individual needs and develop a relationship that will have a positive impact on your oral health.
Whether you have already have a dentist or are undertaking a search for a new dentist, it’s good to know that all dentists who practice in Canada must be licensed to practice dentistry. Licensing requirements vary by Province and Territory and dental specialists, such as orthodontists or oral and maxillofacial surgeons, must earn a license in their specialty area.
Why Licensing is Important
For a dentist to be licensed in British Columbia, they have to go through an application and screening process through the College of Dental Surgeons of British Columbia as well as exams through The National Dental Examining Board of Canada. The license is a governing body that ensures that standards in dentistry are met as well which helps provide the public with the right to quality dental service. Licensing establishes rules, regulations and requirements that need to be met in order to practice dentistry. With this in place, this serves to help protect the public as well as giving them confidence that a dentist is not only qualified but also competent to practice.
If a dentist practices dentistry unlicensed, there is potential for many risks which are passed on to the patient. Without a governing or regulatory body to report to, the dentist does not have to abide by any policies and procedures. This brings into question whether or not their knowledge of dentistry is up to date, if their equipment is sanitized and if best and safe practises are being used. This raises concerns for misdiagnosis, poorly performed or unnecessary procedures and treatments being done as well as a high risk for contracting diseases.
To practice dentistry in British Columbia, applicants must:
- Have completed a general dentistry program
- Be registered with the College of Dental Surgeons of B.C.
- Pass either the National Dental Examination Board of Canada exams or the National Dental Specialty Examination (NDSE)
To maintain registration to practice in British Columbia, the College of Dental Surgeons of B.C. also requires evidence of regular continuing education and current practice hours. There are also standards of practice, code of ethics, health professions acts and bylaws that a dentist must abide by to ensure that professional standards of dentistry are met and provided to patience at all times.
To learn more about these visit the CDSBC
Dentists that are licensed are listed in the College of Dental Surgeons online directory. To see if a dentist is registered to practise in British Columbia click here.
If you believe that you may have received treatment from a dentist without a license and have concerns about your health, contact a public health nurse through a toll-free hotline at 1-855-895-7425.
If you have any questions about the licensing of our dentists at North Burnaby Dental Group and our practice standards and ethics, please do not hesitate to contact us. We pride ourselves in providing outstanding, individualized care to our patients, and it is this high standard of care and solid reputation that has resulted in generations of families, even those that have now grown up and moved to different suburbs, returning to our offices year after year for all of their dental needs. We are looking forward to helping you with any of your dental needs.