In a competitive industry where every patient entering your practice is precious, first impressions are important. And the first thing these patients will see is the design or arrangement of your orthodontic clinic. The process of designing an orthodontic clinic can be difficult, as well as informative. Orthodontic office design should properly reflect the needs of both the practice and the patient.
Clinical spaces like orthodontic practices are often unique in that they work with patients for only a brief period. No matter how short the visit is, a solid orthodontic office design – like dental office design in general – is key to your clinic’s success.
Flow and layout
When developing your orthodontic office design, patient traffic along with dynamic flow patterns are key. There will be constant patient traffic from those entering and exiting the clinic. Because of this, you should design your practice with the overall flow as a priority. Additionally, there will be separate traffic for your staff along with patients. They could be going from the exam room to the reception area and vice versa. Alternatively, transporting equipment in and out of the sterilization room.
Outlining the furniture layout and architecture in a way that creates flow guarantees that your practice won’t become chaotic. Likewise, a poor layout can lead to ineffectual service and a decrease in productivity. By appropriately maintaining a steady flow of patient traffic, you can avert delays and ensure timely patient care.
Furthermore, orthodontist clinic designs do not require separate operating rooms as general dental offices do. Instead, an open bay style operating room is more preferable. This open arrangement is ideal thanks to its operational stations and rows of chairs placed along each side of the room. This arrangement allows for the integration of equipment and delivery systems. Moreover, it offers greater efficiency of patient intake.
Orthodontic office floor plan
A solid floor plan for your orthodontic office design should incorporate the following features:
- Establishes a traffic pattern that reduces congestion and creates adequate space.
- Boosts speed and efficiency in the office.
- Minimizes stress factors relating to orthodontic work as much as possible.
- Takes territorial zones of authority into consideration.
Generally speaking, traffic flow should be circular. You wouldn’t want people to walk by the reception desk twice, do you? Moreover, the traffic pattern in the reception room will not necessarily cut through the middle of the seating layout. Evading the intersection of most traffic patterns effectively prevents congestion. With that said, it is clear to see why circular continuous patterns are best.
A number of things can be present in the center space. These include the receptionist’s area, restrooms, office manager, consultation area, lounge, and group instruction area.
A lot of orthodontists ignore the benefits that come from a circular traffic pattern. They would rather copy the straight-line traffic pattern that most general dentists use. This arrangement typically requires passing through the business area twice. The circular pattern, on the other hand, requires passing through the business area once, and that is when leaving. This cuts down on congestion by 50% and removes the stress of traffic control from the secretary.
Personality in the design
The last thing patients want to do while they wait for the orthodontist is to look at dull walls and listen to bland music. Especially if they are anxious about something. When the orthodontic office design reflects the clinic’s personality, it provides them something interesting to focus on while they wait. On top of that, it gives a glimpse of the staff’s personality and will, in turn, make them feel more comfortable.
Imagine that you walked into an orthodontic office and the environment makes you feel like you are decades in the past. It probably won’t make you feel super confident about the practice, will it? In such a situation, you may worry that not only is the office furniture stuck in the past, but the technology and treatments might be, too.
For potential patients, the obsolete design and equipment might make them doubt the orthodontist’s capability. Make sure that the technology you are using is as up-to-date as possible.
The importance of orthodontic office design
The amount of what an orthodontic office design can say about the practice is amazing. Be sure to take the time to fully develop your office’s layout. If you need assistance in developing your design, our Calgary construction services are happy to help. Additionally, if you are an Ontario resident and want to buy a dental practice, read our article Cost of buying a dental practice in Ontario to learn more.