Comprehensive Dental Health - New Haven, CT

Meet Our World-Class Doctor

Joseph Tagliarini, DMD

A short biography. It might sound a tad corny, but I think I'm the luckiest dentist alive.


I get to practice my field in the best little city in the world. Second only to my excitement for great dentistry is my enthusiasm for New Haven. I enjoy some of the most interesting patients in Connecticut. I love my neighborhood in the Elm City's Lincoln-Bradley area (where I've been fortunate enough to take ownership of New Haven's first modernist home in the International style - I'm a little proud, OK?). Whether it's eating sushi at Miso or picking up omelet supplies from Nica's on a Saturday morning, I truly relish living and working here. It's the perfect blend of small town warmth and intimacy with big city sophistication.


Born in New York City in 1961, the son of Sicilian immigrants (my sisters were born in Italy), I grew up in a similar place, in a way – a friendly place where people really got to know each other in neighborhoods. One-on-one interaction was standard. Still, the glitz of Manhattan was always nearby, too.


My first brush with New Haven was attending Yale (BA, 1983), where I majored in architecture. Ironically, what I enjoyed most about architecture was making models and working with my hands - things you get to do often in dentistry, of course. With its emphasis on structure, strength, and beauty, dental work could be called architecture for the mouth.


In the 1980s, I spent a couple years doing "the corporate thing" (real estate asset management). Not for me; I wasn't quite satisfied. Maybe it's the Brooklyn in me, but I felt I missed working with people close-up. I eventually figured out that my great love was dentistry, and I then attended dental school in Connecticut. I remember running into one of my former Yale professors a few years ago, telling him I was slightly ashamed at giving up architecture. He said something to me I've never forgotten, something which revolutionized my way of thinking about my job. "Well, dentistry is architecture for the mouth." Indeed, it is. For me, the penny dropped that day.


What else is there to tell?


Spending time with my family is important. I have three wonderful sons and a lovely wife, and we relish our moments together, even if it's just watching serial TV, streaming videos, or cooking together.


I sang in the Yale Camerata. Once in a while, I've been known to belt out a bar or two in the office. At Yale, as an undergrad, I also sang in Glee Club.


I'm also a big supporter of local arts. You can see one contemporary quilt I commissioned especially for my office in the waiting area. You may have noticed, too, those beautiful, strange photographs on our walls as you walk in the practice. They're actually close-ups of histology slides of teeth turned into abstract art! I'm also a bit of a "gadget guy" and a frequent reader of Wired magazine. I like to stay on the cutting edge of technology.


But in the end, what matters to me most - more than art, more than my state-of-the-art Apple devices—are people. Smart dentistry involves artistry, architecture, technology and skill - but without caring, and even a sense of fun, it's nothing. Being able to help my patients in New Haven has been my enduring joy. Yes, I may just be the luckiest dentist in the world.

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