Tips On Dental Clinic Design

Last Updated on 7 July 2023 by Editorial Team

How important is good dental clinic design?

Are you looking at opening a new dental clinic or looking to overhaul the design of your current practice?  The process of opening a new dental clinic or practice can be very daunting. There are so many decisions to make and things to consider, such as where will the practice will be located? If it’s going to be set up as an open space office? What kind of dentistry equipment will be needed? What health and safety and building regulations must be followed and adhered to? With regard to the dental equipment, what will give my practice the greatest productivity and growth? What will set my practice apart from others? 

The cost of equipping and building a new dental practice is significant and a long-term investment; the design and look of the space in general plays a key role in ensuring long time success. Having a well-designed dental practice always pays off in the long run. Great design enables greater performance which will result in greater growth of your dental clinic.

What are the priorities when it comes to dental clinic design?

During the initial phase, priority should be given to searching for a really experienced interior design and build team who have experience in dental clinic or practice design, who understand your vision, and who will guide you efficiently through the many decisions involved in creating the dental office layout and interior elements.

A good interior design and build team will be willing to have as much of the dialogue as you deem necessary, and welcome open communication. They should also be people with whom you feel comfortable and confident. Their expert guidance and help will be invaluable during this initial planning phase.

When it comes to the design, the dental treatment room is without doubt the most critical part. It’s massively important because it affects not just your treatment effectiveness, but can impact your ergonomic well-being and your patient experience.

A dental practice with a treatment room that is being designed with high expectations of success should be redesigned with a dentist and staff who will adapt the design to the special needs and requirements of the individual practice.

Dental practices that specialise in orthodontics, for example, will want regular routine adjustments, shave materials or even a more cosmetically ideal design, but will also want to accommodate much more comfortable treatment chairs and equipment.

Design a Dental Clinic that will stand the test of time

It is also very important to design a dental clinic and practice that will not only look presentable now and into the future, but which is well equipped with modern and up to date equipment and fixtures. You don’t want to become outdated just because you were using outdated equipment.  Therefore, a good design and build team should work closely with the dentist’s equipment specialist.

It is very important to select an equipment provider who is knowledgeable, who will help you make good decisions about the selection of equipment, and keep the technical side of things in mind.

The equipment specialist and dentist should leverage their expertise, and work in tandem with the interior design and build team to complete your new project successfully.

dental clinic treatment room design
It’s vital that the design of your dental treatment rooms allow for maximum efficiency

Create design goals for your Dental Clinic

First of all, let’s look at the actual process which would occur when implementing your dental clinic design. The interior designer would first look at the demographics of the area, and then review your unique requirements. In most cases, the dentist would carry on the design process. After measuring and taking a look at the site in question, it is the designer who will find out what will be the best, most appropriate concept.

In order to ascertain efficiency in the dental practice, your designer will explore several aspects of how the space should be used as part of the design process. Remembering all health and safety policies as well as applicable town/city regulations that may apply.  Here are some of our hints and tips to bear in mind when creating your dental clinic design goals:-

Invest in the amount of dental technology you use

Invest in technology, or rather, in technology that generates revenue or increases business and that will distinguish your treatment room from that of traditional dental practice designs.

Currently, in today’s competitive dental healthcare marketplace, it is vital that dentists invest much more of their office development expenses into revenue or referral-generating technology.

Improve the dental patient experience

The biggest design mistake in a dental clinic or practice is placing big and bulky equipment arms on the patient chair, and thus confining the patient to the chair.

Today’s dental patients are accustomed to modern open chair designs and expect even better treatment rooms. Therefore, It’s important to avoid device manufacturers that insist on selling their old fashioned and outdated dental equipment designs.

Enhancing the patient experience and perception promotes a higher level of efficiency and reduces stress levels by removing cables, wires, and the clutter found in dilapidated dental offices. Open space within the clinical surroundings inside the dental practice will result in a more pleasant, patient-centered experience.

Make your dental clinic systems more efficient

Provide the equipment that will make things a more relaxed environment for the dentist, dental assistant and the patient. Ensure you have all the equipment necessary as part of your dental clinic design in order to provide gentle care and the best patient experience, including a headrest, comfortable chair and also comfortable seats for the dental assistants.

Ensure dental furniture & equipment is set up correctly

Providing well-positioned dental chairs and equipment for dentists and highly trained dental assistants who can handle these responsibilities are crucial ways to streamline the dental procedure. Family dentistry is about more than working on a patient’s mouth; it is about relieving pressure on the care team to provide the best patient experience possible.  So it’s vital you bear all this in mind when planning the design of your dental clinic or practice.

Make working spaces more flexible

Ensure that the current infrastructure of the practice allows for a flexible work space that is easily reconfigured as needs change or can be easily upgraded as technology becomes available. 

Pay close attention to dental patient safety

There has been a renewed and increased emphasis on patient safety recently. Your interior design and build team that you choose for your dental clinic should, therefore, be familiar with sterilisation protocols.  We would encourage the use of water filtration systems, clean air technology, and modern gas sterilisation methods in your dental clinic design.

Designers of dental facilities must keep patient well-being top-of-mind. They must keep in mind the details that will create a feeling of trust and comfort, and create a warm and inviting environment. Starting from the main reception and waiting area right through to the main treatment rooms. 

They must consider lighting, colour selection, material choices, decorative finishes, millwork, and other aspects of design. All of which are key to creating an effective, attractive dental practice or clinic, with the clean and modern appearance of the latest equipment. 

dental clinic reception design
It’s important to ensure your dental clinic reception design is warm & welcoming

Determine which size and shape dental treatment room is best for you

Once you have identified your dental clinic design goals, you will need to decide which type of physical layout would work best for you and your practice. There are many ways a room can be configured, but dental treatment rooms tend to fall into at least three general groups: (1) rooms based on the Traditional Treatment Approach, (2) Massage Rooms, and (3) Free-Standing Treatment Rooms.

Open Plan 

This type of room is an open layout design with multiple patient examination chairs, in addition to allowing room for additional chairs.  Despite this option being very cost effective, it unfortunately doesn’t allow patients the necessary privacy they desire and is usually only implemented in an orthodontic clinic.

Single Entry

Single entry rooms are just as beneficial as double entry rooms. They are separated by walls to divide them. Because of that, this type of treatment room provides the most patient privacy. Simultaneously, single entry rooms also permit a smaller through traffic flow since they eliminate a second entry. And because they can be more economical, they are an ideal choice for smaller offices. 

However, this layout can restrict your staff when they are trying to get in and out of the rooms in between patients during treatment. So if going for this option, it would have to be planned properly and incorporate the use of modular systems to minimise the need of staff having to move around from one space to another.

Double Entry 

This type of dental room is separated into areas by walls to allow the staff space to work and to provide privacy for the patient. A huge benefit to this type of room is the fact that it provides the ability to allow both patients and staff to enter the room or access the chair from either side. But It may also require wider room design in order to provide a second entry.

When it comes to dental room size, there is no ideal size as it can depend on not only the room layout, but also the instrument delivery systems and their placement.

However, It has been suggested that the ideal size for a dental operating theatre depends on the facility’s demographics, height, and number of operations performed in the room.

Plan dental furniture & equipment for seamless integration

Develop a balanced design and system that can be changed in the future to match you financial goals and achievement needs in your dental clinic or practice. Stability is an important asset you should take advantage of when sharing space, so take the opportunity to create one that is flexible enough to grow with you.

To be sure you avoid spending above your budget, it’s advisory to buy any parts of a technological system that you already know you need in advance. Saving money should mean more money to be spent on things that can bring you in direct tangible rewards.

Modular integrated dental delivery systems can provide increased efficiency over an existing clinic setup, such as dental assistant carts that are used to complement the appropriate diagnostic or technique modality that was not being used previously.

The versatility of custom built dental cart systems creates several notable advantages for both dentists and dental health professionals. In this versatile system, the dental clinic can flexibly position the system where the patient needs it. It can then be repositioned out of patient view after the procedure is completed.

An integrated monitor mount creates a shared space where patients can be taught what they need to know about dental care. The attractive work top provides more than adequate space for the keyboard, mouse and your computer. 

Choose dental delivery system style & location

Planning and selecting the right delivery style for your dental practice and office space is of great importance because it can affect the size of your dental clinic, ergonomics, patient experience, and staff productivity.

Choosing a practice setup strategy right now that will work best for you will reduce the time you and your dental team spend in redesigning your current operation. It is an ideal time to carefully review and select the delivery style that will optimise procedures, efficiency and productivity as part of the dental clinic design.

Either delivery style can be accomplished with any of the delivery carts. The side delivery cart is attached to the floor, placed in the center of the room and then rolled to either side as needed. The front delivery system is anchored by a removable floor junction box and moved by rolling the unit from one side of the room to the other.

Alternately, an In-Wall junction box is anchored in both sides of the room and an instrument bundle can be pulled in toward the front of the junction box making the delivery system front-loaded. The rear-wall delivery cart allows dental instruments to move to either side of the cart for left or right handed users.

Don’t forget to plan for your dental nurse or assistant!

Ideally, your dental nurse or assistant should have a number of instruments readily available to be used. Make sure as part of the dental clinic design that they are located in the rear of the room, as this is most practical and where they can be easily accessed. This way, they can be used when assisting the skilled dental professional, and in the more general course of providing continuing care for the patient.

Since dental assistants play a larger part in dentistry today, ergonomics and accessibility are very important. In some cases where there is a lack of space at the rear of the room, it would be fine if the assistant uses chair-mounted instruments, although in modern dental care rooms that isn’t really a tenable option and is generally not recommended due to being in-practical.

An additional element of a rear treatment area is to provide work surfaces and auxiliary space that can hold instruments, supplies, and other essential equipment, such as keyboards. Having Modular systems that can roll with ease in your dental clinic can provide ideal ergonomic placement for dentists, nurses and assistants to carry out tasks such as instrument servicing and monitor viewing with a more ergonomic placement of instruments.

And finally, Stand out from your dental competitors!

The goals of a good dental clinic or practice design are to maximise customer satisfaction while establishing comfortable and friendly surroundings while maintaining a sense of individuality in the routine activities to be performed in the location. This should be done while taking into account the perceptions and expectations of one’s audience.

A good interior design will be important for your dental staff’s well-being. Without the proper design for your dental clinic, staff can feel discouraged and stressed. The vibe and feeling of one’s work environment are important, and therefore good design is a costly but sensible investment that will allow you and your valued staff to feel and do your best work.

Need help with the design of your dental clinic?

If you require assistance with the design and build of your brand new dental clinic or practice, or need help with the redesign of an existing space, then we can come to the rescue with our dental surgery design, build and fit-out service.

We provide the complete package for your convenience including dental clinic design, project management, build and fit out, together with the provision and installation of specialist dental equipment, furniture and supplies.

Get in touch and we’ll be very happy to talk you through the services we provide and offer our advice and expertise on dental practice design and build.  Call us for a chat on 0161 503 9075, or use our contact form to email us.  If you’d like to see what some of our customers have to say about our services, then you can read our reviews on Google.

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