You can help improve the health and safety of your entire dental team by creating a culture of wellness that addresses physical health through proper ergonomics. Promoting health and wellness in the workplace helps to ensure worker satisfaction – and a team focused on providing the best care to patients.
One way to promote health and safety in the dental setting is through sound office design and the right equipment. As one of the most respected names in the dental industry, A-dec has the equipment dental practices need to provide a safe and healthy work environment.
A-dec dental equipment is designed with smart ergonomics that help reduce pain and strain while keeping everything you need at your fingertips, allowing you to work more comfortably and more efficiently. From the thin backrest and headrest on the A-dec 500 dental chair to the precise maneuverability of the A-dec LED dental light, A-dec’s ergonomic dental equipment helps team members maintain good form and posture during clinical work. Keep reading to see how you can incorporate ergonomics into your dental practice.
Keep ergonomics in mind
As the science of “fitting the work to the worker,” ergonomics plays a major role in assuring team members feel comfortable and safe in their work environment. Providing team members with the tools and equipment they need to prevent pain and injury can have a direct impact in their physical wellness. This means providing equipment built for each specific role within the practice. The tasks associated with the dentist, hygienist, assistant and front desk personnel each necessitate different kinds of support.
Going beyond ergonomic equipment, consider adopting a stretching routine into your practice as this is key to muscle and joint health. One simple way is to introduce stretching during a morning huddle. Stretching should be done throughout the day, so encourage team members to stretch during breaks, between patients, and whenever they have a few minutes in their busy days.
Choose the right equipment
Proper clinician posture and patient positioning – supported by up-to-date adjustable stools, mirrors, lighting and magnification – are essential to clinician well-being. Here are a few tips for assuring you have the correct equipment for clinical care in the operatory:
- Sitting is preferred over standing when performing any clinical procedure.
- Saddle stools allow you to sit with the pelvis positioned downward and forward and the hips above the knees in a neutral position.
- Keep feet flat on the floor or on the stool footrest.
- Aim for a tripod position that evenly distributes weight through each foot and buttock.
- Adjustable saddle stools allow clinicians to customize the height and seat tilt.
- Saddle stools also allow clinicians to position themselves as close to the patient as possible to prevent overextending their arms.
- The head should be in a neutral position with the back in alignment and the head flexed at no more than a 20-degree angle. Directing eyes downward prevents eye and neck strain.
- Magnification loupes with prismatic lenses and a declination angle of more than 40 degrees aid proper posture.
Along with proper saddle stools for performing clinical procedures, having a high-performing dental chair is important, not only for the comfort of patients but also for the health and wellness of your team. The A-dec 500 dental chair allows for comfortable access to a patient’s oral cavity while its ergonomic design allows the clinician to maintain a healthy posture throughout the procedure.
Give your team an extra hand
With the Third-Hand HVE Holder by A-dec, efficiency and safety come together in a practical solution for aerosol capture. The A-dec Third-Hand HVE Holder makes it easier to practice two-handed dentistry while maintaining aerosol control. The flexible arm securely positions the HVE tip to within 1″ of the oral cavity, allowing for aerosol capture while keeping hands free for scalers and instruments. It’s a simple, affordable way to bring more functionality to your operatory. Contact your Patterson representative to learn more about this new product from A-dec.
The impact of physical stress on your staff is obvious – increased potential for errors, disengaged team members and reduced productivity. Consider implementing some of these ergonomic strategies to keep your team working at the top of their game.
– – –