One of the main goals of dental graduates after completing their studies is to start their own practice. To do that they need to have their own dental office and clinic from where they can start their business and begin their professional career. Opening a dental office can be quite overwhelming, especially for the first time because there are many things that you’re not sure about. It requires some amount of investment and if you’re on a tight budget you have to make sure that you’re investing correctly. The location of your dental office and clinic will play a crucial role to bring you business, but more than that it is the interior space and design that you need to pay attention to in order to boost your dental practice.
Let’s find out more about how you should go about planning the design and space of your dental office and clinic.
Even before you lease or purchase a space you need to be sure of how many operatories you would like to have. This will determine how much space you’ll need. Apart from the operatories, you also need to think of other rooms like waiting room with a front desk, a bathroom, x-ray processing room and sterilization area. If you have more space available, you can also include a private office, staff lounge and consultation room. You also have to consider the number of assistants and staff members that will work with you and high-tech equipment and tools in the treatment areas.
Open Design Reception
Believe it or not, but subconsciously patients rate the value of your clinic based on the experience the moment they enter the clinic. This is why your dental clinic reception area must be spacious, open and inviting rather than being compact. Patients today are more demanding and they dislike the feeling of visiting a clinic and therefore your clinic should look less like a clinic and more like a ‘dental office’. There should be ample sitting space for 6-8 patients at a time. Use colours and appropriate lighting to set the patients’ mood. You may also provide reading material and educational brochures to educate your patients about oral health.
Multi-Functional Treatment Rooms
The basic idea starts with how many treatment rooms you want in your dental clinic. For maximum efficiency, you must ensure that all treatment rooms are of the same size, include the same equipment and have the same layout. This will allow dentist to perform any regular service in any treatment room. There should be ample space in the treatment room for the dentist, equipment and the staff to move around without any hindrance. You also have to consider infection control needs along with plumbing requirements. If you have limited space, big operatories will only make your dental clinic look smaller and consume unwanted space. You can make use of specialized layouts that can help you to make optimum use of the limited space. You can make use of room pairs that allow two rooms in a width of around 14 feet.
Sterilization & Storage Area
Sterilization and storage area must be considered while designing the dental clinic. However, it also depends on the function that is to take place there. Scrub sink, ultrasonic cleaners and sterilization equipment should be placed logically to ensure efficient management. Counter space is usually L-shaped or U-shaped for sterilization area. In order to store items efficiently, it is important that you devote a decent amount of space for storage. Storing the items correctly, not just ensures better accessibility, but improves productivity and decreases the chances of cross contamination.
While going through the design & space management options, you must keep in mind that the overall function of the dental clinic should dictate the form of its design and layout rather than just the exterior look and feel, but at the same time it should also promote a sense of well-being to the patients as well as subconsciously market your dental practice.