A good dental chair is an investment in patient comfort and the reputation of your practice. You want a durable, sturdy piece of furniture that will outlast the years and stand up to cleaning and other daily wear and tear. The $150 “office to go” chair from the big box store may do just fine for a simple, low-volume dental office, but if you are seeking to create an impression of quality dentistry and high-tech dentistry for your patients then it’s time to step up to state-of-the-art furniture.
A great dental chair should provide optimal positioning for both the patient and practitioner. Poor seating design can lead to musculoskeletal problems for the dentist, causing them to hunch over patients or reach down into their mouths and throats with unnatural positions that increase strain on their back and neck. This bending and twisting causes a variety of maladies, including ischemia and premature disc degeneration.
The right dental chair should also allow the doctor to sit comfortably, with their hips higher than their knees for a more natural posture that maintains the lower back’s natural curve and decreases pressure on the intervertebral discs. This seating position should also be able to move easily and quickly, allowing the doctor to maneuver the chair in close proximity to the patient without compromising their posture or increasing strain.
The dental chair should also be able to be easily disinfected and cleaned after each use. The chair and its components can be splattered with blood, saliva and other body fluids, and it should be easy to disinfect it to reduce the risk of disease for both the patient and the practitioner.