Choosing The Perfect Medical/Dental Chair
A medical office is a fast-paced environment where mobility and flexibility are a must. While medical office staff is ready to care of their patients and offer them the best treatment that is possible, they also need to be taken care of. The staff need to be provided great tools and devices to be able to offer their excellent care to the patients. This includes creating a pleasant working environment, where medical office staff can perform their tasks to the best of their abilities. One of the most important aspects in creating such a working environment is the ergonomic chair.
According to research, it has been found that the productivity of workers is increased when they are given the optimal ergonomic setting. Therefore, it is recommended to equip a medical or dental office with adjustable ergonomic chairs, as this contributes to reducing injury and to support the well-being of the staff. Choosing the right chair for a medical or dental office also improves health and efficiency.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), it is advised that ergonomic chairs reduce exposures to uncomfortable positions, forceful exertions and contact stress. From the point of view of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), it is advised to opt for chairs that have plenty of adjustments available.
So how do you know what are the best ergonomic chairs for a medical or dental office? Here you will see some characteristics to take into consideration in order to make the best choice when selecting the proper chair for your medical or dental office.
Doctors, nurses, and other medical office staff are usually needed to move between patient rooms and various workstations. Therefore, it is essential to get chairs that can be easily adjusted to accommodate various body types. This requirement can only be fulfilled by choosing a chair that has certain settings that can quickly change. Please see the following:
- Seat height. In medical offices, it is imperative to use chairs that can conform to individuals of different heights. Every individual of the staff should be able to have a comfortable posture when seated, and this means having their knees slightly lower than their hips, and having their feet on the floor.
- Seat depth. You should look for a chair with a standard size and a seat depth adjustment feature, which will allow it to adjust to various body sizes. It is recommended to avoid chairs with a seat that is too large, as these would make people perch on the front of the seat. It is recommended to adjust the seat to allow for 2 to 4 fingers from the back of the knees to the seat cushion’s front.
- Backrest. It is essential that the chair’s backrest allows the chair’s lumbar curve to fit into the user’s lower back curve. It should also provide a height adjustment, as well as the option to angle. For a working posture, a forward angle is recommended. In certain cases, the back angle needs to be adjusted to minimize lumbar disc pressure and to support an upright working position.
- Padding. A padded chair provides enhanced comfort.
In a medical or dental office, all the furniture and equipment should be easily sanitized. This is essential. So you need to pay attention to the fabric used for the chair, to choose a chair that can be easily cleaned.
You can choose a cooler chair by selecting one with mesh back. However, you should pay attention to your choice and try to avoid mesh seats in which the chair frame can hit the back of your legs, as this can easily become a compression point and an inhibitor for your circulation.
Finding the best ergonomic chair for a dental office
Choosing the best ergonomic chair for a dental office is important, as certain characteristics need to be present. When looking for the chair to be used by the dental operator, it is important to first answer these questions:
- Is the stool provided with a broad enough base and with five casters, to ensure its stability?
- Do the casters roll easily on tile and carpet?
- Does the chair have a comfortable seat, which will fit the contour of your body?
- Does the stool allow you to tilt the chair forward, to avoid pressure put on your legs?
- Is the stool’s peak easily adjustable?
- Does the stool have a lumbar support that can be easily adjusted?
The above questions are the first step to finding the proper chair for your practice. Additionally, here are some essential characteristics to look for when searching for the proper ergonomic chair for you.
- It should allow you to have your feet flat on the ground and your shoulder width stance.
- It should allow your shoulders to be in a relaxed posture.
- Your calves should be vertical towards the floor.
Dental assistant should also be given a good chair, which allows them to have a comfortable sitting posture and to easily get to their instruments. The questions that you should answer prior to finding the best ergonomic chair for a dental assistant are the same as those for a dental operator. However, this chair should also include the following features:
- The chair should have a side body support
- For the assistant who sits facing the dental operator, the chair should have a backrest with a firm lumbar support
- It should allow the assistant to sit 4 to 8 inches over the operator, to allow a certain type of sight towards the patient’s mouth area
What does this all mean?
When looking for the best ergonomic chair for medical and dental practices, it is essential to find a chair that promotes mobility and flexibility. It is important that the chair allows you to easily access your patient. It also needs to be fully adjustable, to fit different body shapes and sizes. The chair should offer great stability and comfort, as well as lumbar support.