Getting the most out of small spaces can pose a challenge, especially when you don’t know where to start, and what to look for in terms of design ideas. If you are limited by space, there are many details you need to take extra care of. Even a slight mistake in the design can make the space look cluttered and dull.
Furnishing and designing your small dental office may sound like a piece of cake but in reality, it can turn into a nightmare. This is true especially if you are not aware of some of the most common mistakes that can happen in the process. These mistakes can be even naive ones – like mixing up two types of light bulbs, for example.
In this article, we will try to point out the most common mistakes you can make in the process of decorating your small dental office, and we will give you some advice on how to maximize the space you’ve got. Having a plan is crucial in this process, and if you don’t stick to it, you can have several issues that will lead to unexpected costs and budget issues.
Small Dental Office Floor Plans Need to Be Planned Well
Small dental office floor plans are the starting point of every single design plan, regardless of the amount of work that has to be put in the office. Without a good floor plan, everything else will not be perfect, and you will simply not be able to create a good project plan and schedule. The limited space in your office should not pose a problem if you make a good floor plan and stick to it.
Finding the best small dental office design ideas is worthless unless you truly understand the importance of having a good floor plan. Implementing changes without thinking about the usage of the space you’ve got is a recipe for disaster.
To understand why is the floor plan so important, let’s say that in a limited space like that, you will need to carefully plan the layout and the surface areas of each individual room. Think of it like this – if you leave too much space for the waiting room, you’ll end up with smaller dental offices, and that spells trouble.
The key is to evaluate the capacity of your dental office – how many patients per day do you expect? How many patients do you expect to be in the waiting room at the same time? Here you need to be realistic and evaluate patient flow effectively.
If you don’t expect more than 2-3 patients at the same time in the waiting room, make sure to limit the waiting room space to reflect that need. In a small dental office, you can hardly fit more than that, anyway.
Also, make sure to have a centralized approach – meaning that all the rooms are accessible from one point. Don’t plan interconnected rooms, because that will mean that the work of dentists inside will be interrupted whenever someone wants to enter or exit the other room.
It is important to leave this to the experts, and not to try to do it by yourself. It is okay to have a general idea of what you would like the layout to look like, but the exact surface area and measurements should be determined by someone who is an expert in this field.
Have a Centralized Storage
Believe it or not, having centralized storage for all your dental supplies will save you a lot of space in the office. This is far better than choosing to have more than one storage. At first glance, it may seem that it is a good idea to have smaller storage lockers across the office, but it can be hard to organize everything and to find what you are looking for.
Furthermore, it is easier to clutter stuff when there is no single dedicated space for all of them. Also, the supplies are more accessible when they are all in one place, meaning that you will not have to collide with other employees in a small dental office, which can cost you some time (and trouble).
When you are planning the floor layout, choose the place where you will place the central storage locker (bear in mind that it has to be easily accessible from all offices, front desk, waiting room, in case several different employees need it at the same time).
Make a Small Dental Office Look Big
Small dental offices are small – and there is nothing you can do to increase the surface area. However, there are some design tricks you could use to create an illusion of your space being much bigger than it actually is.
The key is to choose the lighting and the overall colors of the ambient very carefully. The colors of the walls and the furniture should not be too dark, so you should focus more on pastel and calm shades, which will simultaneously have a positive impact on the patients. Blue and light yellow have calming effects on people. This is also the reason why you often see dental offices painted in these colors.
Another trick is to use the right amount (and type) of lightning in your dental office. A professional dental office design will include the right lighting as well – the right size and number of the lamps, and their position.
When it comes to lighting, there are several bulb types you can choose for your dental space:
- 3000K warm white – this type of light bulb is usually used at home to create a nice and warm atmosphere, and is not recommended for medical offices, due to the yellowish tone the bulb produces
- 4000K cold white – this type of bulb would be suitable for a dentist’s office design because it will give the right amount of light for delicate procedures the dentist performs
- 6000K extreme white – a very useful type of lightning for operating rooms (if there is one in your dental office).
You also need to ensure not to mix 3000K and 4000K light bulb types, because you will just create confusion and a headache for your patients (mixing warm and cold lights is not good for the eyes).
Dentist office design does not have to be necessarily too complicated – all you have to do is to take care of how you will put all the elements together, making the space aesthetically nice and functional at the same time.
After all, the patients who come to visit the dentist must also feel calm and welcome, and the best way to achieve that is to have a good dental office interior design that is warm and welcoming.
In the end, just remember that it is nice to have ideas and plan what you want your dental office to look like. However, don’t hesitate to leave the job to the experts to make sure that everything is done right.