By Kathy Johnson
For the first time in over a decade there’s a practicing dentist in the Municipality of Barrington.
“I always thought I would come back here to practice,” said Dr. Shasta Nickerson, who has partnered with veteran dentist Dr. Kim Mailman in establishing the Barrington Dental Center.
“I wanted to choose a career where I could choose where I wanted to settle,” said Dr. Nickerson. “You can take the girl out of the country but not the country out of the girl.”
A native of Cape Sable Island, Dr. Nickerson graduated from the Barrington Municipal High School in 2004, and has attended Dalhousie University for the past eight years, obtaining her Bachelor of Science in 2008 and her Doctorate of Dental Surgery this past May.
In the meantime, Dr. Mailman, who has been practicing dentistry in Shelburne County for the past 28 years, decided earlier this year to follow through on his long time plan to expand his practice to western Shelburne County.
“We were hoping to do this six years ago,” said Dr. Mailman, but was unable to find another dentist to partner with. “Probably half our patient load in Shelburne is from the Barrington area so it was a natural thing to have an office here.”
Dr. Mailman decided to take the “build it and they will come” attitude and approached the Municipality of Barrington about leasing vacant space in the Municipal Library Complex for the dental center.
“It was good timing,” said Dr. Nickerson. “It all worked out and all fell into place.”
The Barrington Dental Center, which opened earlier this summer, features state of the art digital technology and is paperless, with computers in each of the four operatives as well as the lab.
“All forms of general dentistry are done here,” said Dr. Mailman, who is in the process of talking to several specialists about the possibility of holding visiting clinics at the center. “We’re just waiting to hear back,” he said.
The Barrington Dental Clinic employs five people on a regular basis. “We’ve got great staff,” said Dr. Nickerson, who is thoroughly enjoying her new profession.
“I really like what I do,” she said. “In a small community you really get the chance to know your patients,” which is something she feels is important.
New patients continue to be welcomed at the Barrington Dental Clinic with a short wait time for appointments, as opposed to Dr. Mailman’s Shelburne office, where there is a four month wait.