Dr. Anton (Tom) Wilhelm Hendrik van As settled into Lynn Valley in the spring of 1961 after graduating from the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of Alberta that same spring. He decided to open his office at 3016 Mountain Highway in a small 2 chair office where previously a dentist had been but had moved out to relocate near Lonsdale. Dr. Tom van As was essentially the first dentist to practice in the Lynn Valley area and within 6 months was so busy that he asked a dental supply company to see if two more dentists could come into the area. From this humble beginning, Dr. van As (Sr.) built a family dental practice that focussed on compassionate, quality dental care, with an emphasis on integrity and honesty. He practiced by himself in this first location from 1961-1987 when Dr. Glenn A. van As joined him after graduating from the Faculty of Dentistry at the University of British Columbia in June of 1987.
At that time the original small office was slated to be demolished and the landlord had suggested to look for a location nearby that would provide a more long term solution. The 2nd office was just North from the first office, larger and located at 3167 Mountain Highway in a brand new development and the name Canyon Dental Centre was estabilished. Originally, 4 operatories in size, it was opened in 1988 and grew in size to 6 operatories as Dr. Glenn van As ( Dr. van As Jr. ) began to grow his practice in the area. The same family atmosphere with a focus on integrity and honesty was shared by both Drs. Tom and Glenn. These days of working with his father, are a lasting memory for Dr. Glenn as he grew to learn the importance of building not only nice looking smiles but solid relationships with patients and staff alike. The 18 years that the two practiced together saw dramatic changes in the materials, techniques, technologies and way that dentistry was practiced but the common thread of trying to treat each patient like family remained.
In 1997, Dr. Glenn took a course in microscope enhanced dentistry with a focus on root canals in Seattle. This course would change his practice entirely. Dr. Glenn became one of the first general dentists in Canada to focus on using the microscope for all his clinical dentistry. The decision to see better through enhanced magnification and illumination was born out of a desire to do better work for his patients, and to create a “high tech” and “ high touch” dental practice. With the new focus on technology, Dr. van As became again a pioneer in using lasers for his practice. Initially, a soft tissue Argon laser was purchased followed by a hard tissue Erbium laser in 1999. Over the years Dr. Glenn has become recognized for his expertise in both the fields of microscopic and laser dentistry having lectured over 600 times in 20 different countries, writing over 75 articles and providing numerous training sessions on both topics world wide.
In 2005, Dr.Tom van As decided to hand over the reins full time to Dr. Glenn. The time they spent together in the two offices will always be a highlight for both of them. Soon after it was becoming apparent that the office was simply too small. It had grown from 4 to 6 operatories but was the infrastructure was not in place to embed computers in the room or to provide the optimum in quality for the patients of Canyon Dental Centre. At this time the new Lynn Valley Library was being built and Dr. Glenn decided to make a bold move and double the size of his existing practice. The state of the art new office at the corner of Lynn Valley Road and Mountain Highway was officially opened in October of 2008. The high tech, high touch concept was now fully born with 9 dental operatories, and a new addition- namely Canyon Laser and Skin Care.
The new addition was a minimally invasive facial aesthetics clinic founded and created by Lee-Ann van As, the wife of Dr. Glenn. Her clinic focusses on maintenance of your youthful appearance through various techniques utilizing such as : microdermabrasion, chemical peels, skin tightening, facials, injectables such as Botox and Fillers. The same emphasis of quality care in a private, safe and friendly environment now runs through the dental practice and the minimally invasive facial aesthetics portion of the practice. In addition, to microscopic and laser dentistry, the team at Canyon Dental has integrated numerous other “high tech” advances including cosmetic and implant dentistry as well as orthodontics.
Over the last 50 plus years the locations, and technologies may have changed but the desire to help our patients achieve a healthy and attractive smile, as well as maintain their youthful appearance in a family style practice where the high tech meets with a high touch remains and the future will bring new technologies and materials but the same attention to treating all our patients as if they were family will remain an essential part of our core values.