The General Dentist
As the leader of the oral health care team, your dentist works closely with the dental office staff that may include dental assistants, hygienists, therapists and other staff. Each member plays an important role in the oral health care team.
Your general dentist is an oral health expert and knows how the health of your teeth, gums, and mouth relates to your general health.
A general dentist will refer to a specialist to complement or enhance the oral care a person is receiving. The referral is often for both diagnosis and treatment and occasionally for a diagnosis and a professional opinion.
There are nine nationally recognized dental specialties in Canada. The Commission on Dental Accreditation of Canada (CDAC) reviews and accredits the education programs in the nine dental specialties.
Dental Public Health
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
Oral Medicine and Pathology
Oral & Maxillofacial Radiology
Orthodontics and Dentofacial Orthopedics
The Dental Office Staff
Your dentist may have a receptionist or several dental office staff depending on the size of the practice. The office staff, including the receptionist, is often your first point of contact with a dental office. The office staff manages the flow of patients through the office by booking and scheduling appointments, taking care of billings and payments, as well as day-to-day office administrative duties.
The Dental Assistant
The dental assistant helps the dentist during patient examinations and treatment procedures. The dental assistant prepares patients for treatment, passes instruments and materials to the dentist and keeps the mouth dry using suction during treatment procedures. The dental assistant sterilizes dental instruments and may take X-rays, make dental impressions or polish and apply fluoride to your teeth.
For more information, please visit the: Saskatchewan Dental Assistants' Association.
The Dental Hygienist
Dental hygienists are primary oral health care professionals who provide clinical assessments and therapy, oral health education and offer health promotion strategies to people of all ages. They work with patients and communities to provide professional treatment and advice to help prevent oral disease, as well as to support and promote total wellness. As a member of a self-regulating profession, a registered dental hygienist must practice safely, ethically and effectively for the promotion of the oral health and well-being of the public of Saskatchewan.
The dental hygienist will assess your general health, the health of your teeth and gums, and be part of the comprehensive care you receive. Routinely in a dental practice, your dental hygienist may take X-rays, make dental impressions, perform oral cancer screenings, remove hard and soft deposits from your teeth, polish, desensitize and apply fluoride to your teeth.
For more information, please visit the: Saskatchewan Dental Hygienists Association.
The Dental Therapist
The Dental Therapist Dental therapists are primary oral health care professionals who are trained to perform basic clinical dental treatment and preventive services within a variety of practice settings. Dental therapists provide restorative dental treatment services, disease prevention and oral health promotion programs to maintain and improve health. Dental therapists also advocate for the needs of clients, assist them in accessing care and refer them to other health professionals for services beyond the scope of the dental therapist’s practice.
For more information, please visit the: Saskatchewan Dental Therapists' Association.
The Dental Technician