- If you’re designing a new surgery install lots of electrical sockets, including in the floor. This will mean you’re not tripping over wires when using additional equipment. Also think about where your air conditioning unit is positioned – this should not be pointing directly at the patient. In fact, the patient is usually the coolest as they lose heat when their mouth is open (in the same way a dog loses heat when it pants).
- Natural light is important for your circadian rhythm so always work in a room with a window. It’s also a good talking point if you can see what the weather is like outside!
- Regularly sit in your dental chair and look up. Look for dust, cracks, broken lights etc. and fix as required. It’s a good idea to renovate your room at least every 10 years. Consider changing your chair after 10 years, 25 years and 35 years.
- Ask a good non-dental friend to inspect your surgery and give honest critical advice.
- If you’re struggling for space and require an additional decontamination room think about installing a glass partition in the same room instead.
- On meeting your patient (as obvious as it sounds), smile, make eye contact and listen.
- Try to discuss treatment plans and gain consent outside of the dental chair in a more comfortable environment.
- Make a treatment flow chart that you can show to your patient at the start of each visit so they can easily follow where they are in their treatment journey.
- Useful phrases: “there are some problems but there are solutions”, “we can ignore that tooth but it may become very painful when you least expect it”, “let’s try and make your teeth work properly and then we can make them as pretty as we can”.
- Evidence shows that you can reduce anxiety by informing patients about using the stop signal. The most effective way of doing this is through writing (Jackson & Lindsay 1995) so consider putting up a notice in the waiting room saying something along the lines of ‘if you feel any pain, wave your hand and we’ll stop right away’.
- Invest in and value your team. Always introduce your nurse to the patient and involve them in treatment decisions e.g shade taking. Learn how to practice 4-handed dynamic dentistry with your nurse – useful videos on YouTube by Martyn Amsel and Sally Chadwick
- Always have a good relationship with a Nursing Agency and Dental Engineer.
- Get good at providing local anaesthesia – this should be your greatest skill. Remember there may be altered effectiveness in those with psychological disorders, chronic pain syndromes and drug abusers.
June 29, 2023
Pink Aesthetics... Read more
June 26, 2022
10 Key Points from EuroPerio10... Read more
June 11, 2021
Working as a hygienist or therapist... Read more