9 mistakes made in dental practice fitouts

During the setup of a new dental practice there’s always going to be a long list of expenses to deal with. Your priority may be to ensure you have the latest and greatest dental equipment to set yourself apart from the competition, however that doesn’t have to come at the expense of your appearance of your dental practice.

There are a lot of little mistakes which can be made during setup phase which can cause issues for a dental practice in the long run. So in this article, we list the ten most common mistakes made in dental practice fit-outs so that you’ll know how to avoid them.

At the dentist

1. Not budgeting the project carefully

Budgeting is important. Failing to do this can cause delays in construction if costs blow out.

To avoid this issue you can speak to our shopfitting team to determine an appropriate budget for your fitout project.

They can also help you through the entire process of setting up the clinic, right up to its launch.

2. Not planning out the expense priorities

Plan out your priorities for expenditure. 

Your fitout design team will help you achieve the desired look and feel of the practice.

That will allow you to concentrate your other spending like acquiring the necessary equipment to actually run the practice itself.

  • Dental chairs
  • X-ray unit
  • Dental forceps
  • Motors
  • Drainage
  • Air conditioning

The are all items which are you’ll need for your practice, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a dental practice that looks nice at the same time.

3. Lack of sensitivity to patient needs

The layout of a dental clinic don’t need to be complicated, but many ignore the patients’ needs. 

The general feel of the clinic should be welcoming, soothing, and comfortable. 

While working areas like the treatment rooms, storerooms, and the office have to be functional, the waiting room should have enough space to accommodate all the people waiting. 

A water dispenser, some books and magazines, a semi-private area for those waiting to take calls or use their computers, and free WiFi must be taken into your design considerations. 

The doors should be wide enough to allow a wheelchair to pass through too.

4. Not planning for the future

A dental surgery needs special care. 

Depending on your clinic size and the number of patients you hope to treat, it’s important to understand the type of dental chairs and equipment you may require, and how many chairs or sofas the waiting area requires. 

Keep in mind that you may need to accommodate more people as your business grows.

If you’re starting with a smaller practice initially but you plan to grow, will the space and layout accommodate that growth?

Your fitout team can help you answer all of these questions before construction starts.

5. No layout planning

Every operation has a specific system that must be kept in mind. 

The cabinets, worktops, and basins should be fitted to aid smooth workflow and storage. 

Depending on the space available you should decide what type of dentist chairs or delivery units should be placed, whether it be fixed, mobile, or mounted.

6. Ignoring the importance of lighting

Lighting is of crucial importance in a dental clinic. 

While it should create a warm and comfortable ambience in the waiting area, the surgery’s task lights should be bright positioned to make treatment an efficient process. 

Consider using ceiling and walls to place ambient lighting as needed.

7. Not paying attention to flooring

The floor speaks volumes about the clinic. 

Tile or stone floors are cold and can cause injuries if one falls. 

The material used for flooring should be durable, skid-free, hygienic, and easy to clean. 

It should also be suited for wheelchair movement, and fitted with ramps if the space is not on all one level.

8. Ignoring the benefits of wall colours

Colours and affect everyone. 

In a dental office, the people waiting are generally worried and anxious. 

So the colour scheme throughout the clinic should promote a relaxed, calm, and restful environment. 

This will improve efficiency, relieve fatigue of the dentists and staff, and help the patients cope with their anxiety too. 

Try to ensure the colour scheme isn’t overly clinical.

9. Ignoring staff and their requirements 

Staffing is one of the biggest operational costs in a dental practice.

To retain good staff, you must make their working area pleasant. 

So try and create enough space so that multiple people can work without having to climb over each other. 

They should also have adequate storage space to keep their documents and equipment organised.


If you keep all the above points in mind, you should have a seamless start-up and see a faster return on your investment. 

If you’re still nervous about starting a dental practice then contact our team of fitout specialists at shop fitters gold coast and we’ll help guide you through the process.


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