A dental technician makes dental appliances like dentures, crowns and bridges, and orthodontic appliances. They are part of the oral health care team. To become registered in B.C. a dental technician must complete an approved dental technician program where they learn about dental materials, dental anatomy, fabrication techniques, and other sciences. These programs generally last two to three years. To become registered as a dental technician with the College of Dental Technicians of BC, they must pass several exams that test their knowledge and skills.

In B.C. only dental technicians registered with the College of Dental Technicians of BC can use the title “registered dental technician”, “certified dental technician”, and “dental technician”.

What does a dental technician do?

Dental technology began as a part of dentistry. In the 1950s the profession grew to include other skilled technicians and a separate industry began. As a dental patient you may never meet the dental technician who makes your dental appliances; however technicians are an important part of the dental team. They design, make and adjust dental devices. Dental technicians generally work in laboratories ranging from one to 80 or more other technicians.

How do dental technicians keep their skills up to date?

Dental technicians must renew their registration with the College of Dental Technicians of BC each year. They are required to obtain a minimum number of continuing education credits every three years. There is also a random inspection program of dental laboratories to ensure that dental technicians meet practice standards.

What happens when I first visit a dental technician?

You may have a chance to meet a dental technician during your appointment with your dentist or denturist, to discuss the recommended dental treatment. The dental technician may also check the shade of your natural teeth to make sure that the new appliance matches their colour. Patients sometimes go directly to a dental laboratory to have the shade taken or for basic repairs to their dental appliances or dentures.

How can I find a dental technician?

Generally, patients do not access the service of a dental technician directly. Dental appliances can only be made by a dental technician based on a prescription from a dentist or medical practitioner. If you’re looking for a specific dental technician, you can check the College of Dental Technicians of BC’s website. Information there includes where the technician works and if there are any limits or conditions on their practice.

How do I pay for the services of a dental technician?

Dental technician services are not usually accessed by patients directly so their fees will be included in the service bill from the dentist or denturist, except in cases  where you went to a laboratory to have a repair done.

What if I have a concern about the care I received from a dental technician?

As a patient, you have the right to expect a professional standard of care from your dental technician. If you have a concern about the services you have received, please contact the owner or manager of the laboratory that provided the service, the dentist or denturist who treated you, or contact the regulatory College for dental technicians at: registrar@cdtbc.ca.

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