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Dr Amit Kotecha

Dr Amit Kotecha tells us why he chose Blueprint & Dentsply Sirona for his practice

By Blog, NEWS, What's New

Dr Amit Kotecha, Specialist Oral Surgeon and Principal of Care Dental, Leicester takes us through why he chose to partner with Blueprint Dental & Dentsply Sirona when the time came to refit his high end surgery.

Watch the video to see how, with the experience and expertise of Sharaz, David and the Blueprint team, Dr Kotecha was able to choose the right equipment for his refit, all brought together seamlessly by the Blueprint service team on site.

“With regard to digital dentistry, what we found with Blueprint Dental was that their knowledge was very broad and very in depth. They did not struggle to integrate the technology together. They were able to bring everything together veery beautifully for us and everything worked as it should, which is a huge relief to us.”

Dr Amit Kotecha, Care Dental, Leicester

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Red Green Instrument Processing Zones

Dental Instrument Reprocessing done right

By Blog

Instrument reprocessing is a vital activity in any dental practice and ensuring that every instrument which comes into contact with the patient in a clinical setting is both clean and decontaminated or sterilized (depending on how and where it’s being used) is of utmost importance and a key ingredient in your duty of care to each and every patient.

There are various methods of reprocessing dental instruments and the type of method used will depend on the type of instrument, its use and construction.

In this blog post, we will explore some of the most common methods of reprocessing dental instruments, so that you can choose the best option for your practice.

First, let’s start with a look at the instrument reprocessing cycle

Dental Instrument Reprocessing Cycle

Figure 1: A typical instrument reprocessing cycle in a dental surgery

The dental instrument reprocessing cycle includes the vital steps of cleaning and disinfection, inspection, packaging, sterilization, documentation and the approval of instruments before they are reused on the next patient. This should be a standardised process only carried out by trained staff every step of the way.

What are cleaning and sterilisation? 

They’re pretty much the same thing, aren’t they? 

Well, no. In fact, absolutely not.

Here’s why…

Cleaning is the removal of dirt and debris, usually in the presence of a detergent. In a dental environment this could well include bodily fluids released as the result of dental treatments, like blood, tissue, tooth and bone fragments or pus.

Sterilization is a process, physical or chemical, which completely destroys micro-organisms – including even the most resistant bacteria and spores.

But sterilisation can only occur on a clean surface, so it is vital that the cleaning step takes place prior to sterilization (although, there are, of course, combination products available, which combine both steps).

So now we have that cleared up, let’s concentrate on how to make sure your instrument processing set up is both efficient and effective.

Where should Instrument Processing take place? 

Effective infection control can only be achieved if there is clear, physical separation of dirty and clean areas for instrument reprocessing.

The room should be clearly demarcated with dirty and clean zones and have a simple flow of instruments from the time they are received back from a patient procedure, through the reprocessing area and equipment, to the time they are ready to be released as clean and ready for their next patient.

The ‘Dirty’ or ‘Red’ zone includes a delivery area, any precleaning equipment and the washer disinfector.

Instruments should then follow the pathway illustrated in Figure 1 above through inspection and packaging to the ‘Clean’ or ‘Green’ area post sterilization.

The unclean and clean areas in the reprocessing room can be visually represented very well using a coloured red & green signage on the wall or cabinetry.

The right equipment in the right place in any reprocessing room helps to optimize processes and increase the safety of patients and the practice team. 

In addition, with equipment from just one manufacturer, the entire workflow can be made more efficient, saving a lot of time and money, as the equipment is all ideally matched to each other.

At Blueprint Dental we are proud to be the longest serving UK MELAG distributor and can offer safe and reliable instrument reprocessing solutions for dental surgeries. With a wide range  innovative quality products, together with our excellent after sales service expertise and reputation, you’ll benefit from an ideally coordinated reprocessing workflow and a safe hygiene cycle in your practice.

Melag Instrument Processing Equipment from Blueprint Dental

So far we’ve concentrated on the instrument reprocessing cycle as a whole. Now let’s take a look at the individual steps in brief and some handy tips to getting the best out of your practice’s set up…

 

  1. Make sure dirty instruments are properly prepared for reprocessing

It might sound a bit daft, but getting the best cleaning results on your instruments starts as soon as they have been used. Blood and debris quickly begins to dry out on instruments’ surfaces and in lumens, so the quicker you can get them collected and delivered to the washer disinfector or a precleaning station the better. Precleaning may just involve immersion in a pre-cleaning solution or a short cycle in an ultrasonic cleaning bath and will serve to remove any gross debris prior to placement in the washer disinfector.

Melatherm Washer Disinfector
  1. Use a Washer Disinfector to ensure they are clean and have been thermally disinfected

Instruments should be processed in a washer disinfector as mechanical cleaning is particularly safe, time- and cost-efficient. A suitable cycle should be selected according to the type of instrument being reprocessed, but it is likely that the cycle will include exposing the instruments to a detergent, rinsing, thermal disinfection and quite possibly a drying phase to the cycle to conclude.

Melag Washer Disinfectors from Blueprint Dental
  1. It’s crucial to take a peek before packaging

After cleaning, disinfection and drying, a visual and functional inspection of the instruments must be carried out by competent personnel. Some instruments require the additional use of care products, primarily for lubrication, which should be done in line with the manufacturer’s instructions.

Any instruments which are not visually clean at this point in the process should be rejected and returned to the dirty zone to start the reprocessing cycle afresh.

  1. It’s a wrap

Before instruments are sterilized in a steam sterilizer, they must be suitably packaged – either as a set in a sterilization container or using sealing devices, individually wrapped in sterilization packaging. 

These specialist containers or sealed packages will still enable steam at the correct temperature (eg 134oC) to come into direct contact with the internal and external surfaces of the instruments for the required amount of time for sterilization to occur, but will keep them sterile after the cycle and hence safe for use on the next patient.

5 The all-important Sterilization phase

Steam sterilizers are commonly used for this purpose in dental practices and are classified into classes B, S and N. Class B sterilizers are often referred to as vacuum or pre-vacuum units and offer the advantage of being able to sterilize instruments regardless of the type of packaging and complexity of the hollow body.  S & N class units are more widely used for solid and less complex instruments.

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6 Make sure you’re keeping your house in order

The active part of the instrument reprocessing cycle ends with approval which must be documented before the instruments can be put into storage or released for use on the next patient. A traceable and properly recorded document trail of the entire reprocessing workflow ensures legal security and safe traceability of the instruments back to the patient. 

  1. Safe & Sterile storage ready for the next procedure

To prevent re-contamination prior to reuse, all packaged sterile instruments must be stored dust-protected, clean and dry at room temperature.

All instruments stored in this area should be clearly labelled to understand when they were reprocessed and the cycle repeated if the expiry date has been exceeded. This is especially true for kits used in specialist procedures or treatments performed infrequently, as using instruments which have been stored too long could compromise patients safety and elevate the risk of infection.

If you would like to benefit from efficient workflows and maximum protection for patients and your team, please get in touch and we’ll talk you through the best instrument reprocessing equipment for you and your practice.

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Dental_Cabinetry_3

Not all dental cabinets are created equal – find out why…

By Blog

Not all cabinets are created equal. Sure, the general fundamentals are similar to a degree, but when it comes to the requirements of the dental sector,  it’s a whole new ball game.

Why?

Because we aren’t talking about generic storage solutions here, and that goes whether you’re a lab owner or a dental practitioner.

What we are talking about is bespoke, commercial grade furniture, fabricated to your exact specification and designed not only enhance your workspace, but to impress and reassure your clientele.

Sound a little over the top? Well, let us explain……

Love your space 

While we know how important it is to choose the correct equipment for your dental surgery or lab, the same level of focus should really be applied to your cabinetry layout. Your dental cabinetry should enhance your workspace and complement not only your dental chair, laboratory kit and equipment, but also the way you choose to work. This can be as simple as ensuring you have enough storage space and ample room around the head of the chair, or as involved as creating a unique mobile equipment housing to make life easier while undertaking specialist procedures.

Either way, given the number of hours you are likely to spend in your surgery or at your lab station, taking the time to consider your workspace layout is time very well spent.

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It’s not all about you 

Yes it’s your surgery or yes, it’s your laboratory and its layout and overall aesthetic should be built around you and your requirements. However, take time to think about who else this room is going to have an impact on. This will be your patients if you’re in a clinical setting, for sure, but whatever your specialism, it will also have a bearing on your colleagues and other visitors. The layout and décor of your surgery is going to set expectations for your patients from the outset. If the room looks too clinical, too cluttered or even too dated, those already uncomfortable in such environments could find it harder to relax.

Similarly, if you’ve positioned yourself in the upper echelons of the industry, your cabinetry needs to make a statement that supports this. Of course there are multiple other factors that play their part, but paying due consideration to what your surgery or laboratory design says to your clientele about you and your business should always be an integral part of the process.

Consider it as part of your brand and be consistent in the way you apply it.

Made to measure

To the layman it’s easy to glance around a dental surgery and just see generic cabinetry – a few cupboards and drawers to store stuff in, but the truth is almost every unit is likely to have been designed with a very specific purpose and workflow in mind.

Bin units that open with the touch of a foot or knee to minimise hand contact, amalgam mixer housings that cleverly utilise a slide out worktop to facilitate use or baseless dispensing wall units that remove the need for constantly opening doors.

All of these things must be designed specifically with dental practitioners in mind and will ultimately contribute to the efficient running, seamless workflow and successful infection prevention routines of your business.

And that’s where we come in.

Here at Blueprint we have developed the most innovative units that help you maximise your workspace.

And together with our partners at CMC Commercial Cabinetry, we’ll work with you every step of the way and are confident we have a solution for you From PC storage with integrated solid surface keyboard slides to bespoke server housings, from laboratory benching with integrated extraction to surgery runs which maximise infection prevention.

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Dental Surgery Cabinetry

Built to last

Now this is a biggie.

One of the fundamental differences between proprietary and bespoke cabinetry is the inherent quality of the materials and components used.

Entry level domestic units don’t even come close to the standard or quality of bespoke units. For commercial use you should be looking at 18mm Laminated Furniture Grade MDF and/or Acrylic Faced Board as the primary materials. These have incomparable strength when viewed alongside other offerings and give you peace of mind if you are considering the longevity of your new fit out.

Think of it this way:

Imagine your kitchen at home, how many times a day are you opening and closing those doors? Once? Twice?

Now think of your workspace and ask the same question. Undoubtedly the dental cabinetry in your surgery is getting quite the workout in comparison, so ensuring it’s fit for purpose is critical.

The same goes for the components, from hinges to drawer runners; they need to be of a commercial grade and be designed to stand the test of time.

This is equally applicable in a dental laboratory setting, where there may also be other factors to consider, such as fine particle extraction and equipment integration – neither of which are going to be addressed with flat packed cabinets from your local DIY retailer.

The finishing touch

This can be the tricky bit – choosing colours and finishes.

Some people have clear ideas right from the outset and others leave it to the very last second before making a choice. Either way there’s no escaping it’s an important decision…and one you have to live with once it’s made!

And with so many options available it can be a bit of a minefield.

Gloss or matt?

White frontals and coloured worktop or visa versa? or both?!

It helps if someone with expertise can guide you and perhaps show you previously installed combinations to give you an idea of what might work for you. And what works for you might not be someone else’s cup of tea at all.

You, for instance, might be looking to match the colours with your chair upholstery, whereas someone else might be looking for pure white for a more clinical look. You might have you r heart set on a contemporary design, with funky, bright colours, whilst someone else may opt for more soothing pastel shades or a monochrome effect.

Whichever way, working with a company experienced in such things will give you an extra degree of confidence when looking at those finishing touches.

At Blueprint, we have that experience and all round expertise to make sure you select the best cabinetry for your speciality, your workflow, your budget and your taste!

We’d love to help you with your project. The first step is easy. Just give us a call or complete the form below and we’ll help you every step of the way from here on in…

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Service Engineer in van

Finding the best service provider for your dental equipment

By Blog

Whether you’re a dentist or a dental technician, you’ll appreciate the importance of keeping your dental equipment in tip top working order.

We all know the frustrations and stress involved with a piece of kit that’s not functioning. At best it gives you a few anxious moments whilst you reboot or restart and at worst it results in cancelled patient procedures or zero lab output.

In this blog post, we’ll give you some great tips on finding a dental service provider who knows their stuff when it comes to dental chairs or digital imaging equipment or laboratory apparatus, but also who takes the time and trouble to get to know you, your staff and your practice or lab.

Should be simple, right? Well, not always, apparently! 

We do, unfortunately, hear of instances where this isn’t the case, where dental practices or laboratories don’t receive the service they and their patients deserve. So, let’s take a look at how you can make sure you don’t find yourself in that unfortunate category…

Tip No: 1 – What is dental servicing? 

Have you ever stopped to really consider what dental equipment servicing is?

It’s all about maximising ‘uptime’ ie. the amount of time the equipment is ready and available for use and is actually a whole lot more than a frantic call to your dental equipment supplier when something’s not working correctly!

Sure, that’s part of it, but it’s bigger than that. As well as providing a rapid response breakdown service when things go wrong, your dental service provider should also provide as many of the following options, in order to maximise equipment uptime, or minimise downtime – whichever way you prefer to look at it:

·  Preventative Maintenance – just like your car, your dental equipment requires regular preventative maintenance to ensure any consumable parts like filters are changed regularly before they become blocked and cause a bigger issue. Key components may need changing at set intervals to keep everything in working order. This should all be part of any preventative maintenance work carried out by your provider.

·  Telephone support & remote diagnostics – not all service blips require an engineer to jump in a van and come to you. Find yourself a service supplier who provides technical support over the phone and can talk you through getting back up and running. Some equipment can also be interrogated by a service engineer connecting to it remotely. This not only assists the technical support team in their assessment of whether an engineer needs to attend site, it will also give them an insight into what the problem may be beforehand and ensure they have the right replacement parts with them.

·  Calibration – Many pieces of dental equipment for the surgery or laboratory also require periodic calibration to ensure they’re providing accurate results and adhering to industry standards, so it’s really important to have a team on board who can perform the calibration and produce the necessary paperwork and certifications to any relevant regulations.

·  Spare Parts – a decent service supplier will invest in a locally held stock of top moving spare parts, easily accessible to both customers and service engineers alike. This may include preventative maintenance service kits, as well as replacement key components which minimises downtime when a fault occurs.

·  Workshop – both surgeries and dental laboratories also have smaller equipment, often handheld or bench top, which don’t require an engineer to attend on-site in the event of a mal-function.

Does your service provider have their own local workshop where repairs of these items can take place?

This will save you valuable time and money – you don’t want to have to wait whilst your key bit of kit is returned to the manufacturer to be mended. It’s also worth enquiring as to whether the supplier offers a swap out or loan service, which will mean no interference to your busy work schedule.

·  Upgrades – the working lifetime or functionality of equipment can often be extended or enhanced by performing an upgrade. This may be carried out remotely in the case of a software upgrade or require a site visit to fit new and improved components. Either way, make sure the engineer has been trained on the upgrade they are performing and the equipment is fully tested and, if required, recalibrated, before being put back into service.

·  Customer Training – Most dental equipment suppliers will provide first line training when your kit is first installed and handed over to you. But that’s only half the story. Find a service supplier who will provide refresher training for your team when you need it and also for new members of staff as your team evolves. And, if they’ll provide some first line technical training too, you’ll improve your uptime and the number of calls you’ll need to make for just a small niggling problem, so you’ll both win!

 

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Tip No: 2 – How often should dental equipment be serviced? 

Always the million dollar question.

And the answer is…..it depends!

It depends on the equipment itself and it may depend on the age of the equipment.

Regular preventative maintenance will maximise the working life and operational efficiency of your kit, saving you time and money in the long run.

But there’s a more serious compliance issue to consider too, as, in order to comply with your CQC requirements, you should always ensure that every piece of equipment is maintained regularly and in accordance with manufacturers’ recommendations by factory-trained engineers.

Which leads us on to…

Tip No: 3 – How do I know the engineer knows their stuff?

This is perhaps one of the most important considerations.

Much of the equipment in your lab or dental surgery will be classed as a medical device, which brings a whole new level of seriousness to anybody delving inside and changing components or settings.

Make sure the engineer is factory trained by the appropriate manufacturer. A good service provider will have up to date training records for their engineers and won’t mind sharing them with you.

It sounds simple enough, but having a poorly trained engineer tackle a service task for which they’re not properly trained, can have a devastating impact on your hard earned investment and let’s face it, your livelihood.

Dental Service Contract

Tip No: 4 – Should I get a service contract?

Taking out a service contract will give you visibility of your on-going maintenance costs. Often service providers will prioritise customers who have a contract in place and may even give them discounts on other services, such as spare parts, so it’s a good conversation to have with your potential servicing partner.

Having a service contract in place should also mean that your equipment receives planned maintenance in line with its manufacturer’s recommendations, which will help maintain it in good working order and avoid any unnecessary downtime.

Tip No: 5 – How much should I pay?

As with most things in life, there’s an element of ‘you get what you pay for’ with dental service.

Of course, there are those who offer cheap service. They may be fine, but then again…

Our advice is to always go to a reputable, recommended service provider, with wide ranging experience, who’ll help you keep the show on the road. Talk to your peers, talk to neighbouring practices or labs, talk to others in the industry.

It may mean you don’t choose the cheapest service option, but we’re willing to bet it’ll be money well spent.

Dental Service Invoice

At Blueprint Dental, we are trusted and recommended by dentists all over the UK. We know how to make dental practices look great and function perfectly

Why dental professionals recommend Blueprint Dental 

There are actually a variety of reasons, which when considered collectively have us standing head and shoulders above the rest:

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Reason No: 1 – Our engineers know their stuff

Our engineers are factory trained when they first join us and also receive regular refreshes to their training for new equipment and upgrades.

The servicing of Dentsply Sirona equipment is a good example here.

We are one of the only service providers in the UK with experienced, factory trained engineers for their treatment centers, CEREC and digital imaging ranges.

But it’s not limited to Dentsply Sirona. The Blueprint Dental Service team are also factory trained on many of the world’s other leading global dental brands, such as (but not limited to!) Planmeca, Medit and Melag.

And let’s not forget the personal side of having an engineer visit you. We’re all human and, much like your patients like to see the same dentist or hygienist when they visit your practice, we appreciate that you don’t want to see a different engineer every time you interact with our service team.

So, as well as being a really nice bunch, we’ll always try and provide some continuity, so you get the chance to build up a great working relationship with an engineer or small number of engineers.

 

Reason No: 2 – We offer the whole range of service activities

Just like we listed earlier in the article, we offer all those service elements which bind together to collectively furnish you with the best possible uptime for your equipment.

Our service team can provide you with everything from preventative maintenance to calibration services to remote diagnostics.

We have a small service workshop, but big enough to offer local repair facilities for smaller benchtop kit and we’ll train your team from the start and as they evolve and grow with time.

Reason No: 3 – We’re affordable

We won’t claim to be the cheapest, but we do know that we provide the highest quality of workmanship at an affordable price.

We understand dentistry, whether your own particular speciality is in dental surgery or the dental laboratory world, and we’ll provide you with high quality service at a reasonable price, that’ll keep both your patients and cash flowing through your business.

 

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Reason No: 4 – We’ll be there!

We understand the level of panic that sets in when something goes wrong and our service team will provide first line maintenance over the phone, if necessary, or get an engineer dispatched to you without delay if you need someone to come out and fix the problem.

But our work ethic runs much deeper than that.

We’ll look after you from day one. Our service team even get involved whilst you’re still planning your project, so we can advise you of what the on-going service commitments are likely to be before you sign on any dotted lines.

And, what’s more, with our fabulous links to leading dental finance providers Vector Finance, we can even factor your service plan into your lease payments

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Reason No: 5 –  We’re the #MostRecommended

We don’t use that hashtag lightly or flippantly.

Headed up by Technical Director, David Brown, our service team really does have an awesome reputation for all the right reasons. David has been in the dental business for over 20 years and is widely recognised as one of the most experienced and talented dental engineers in the UK, if not even further afield.

And his work ethic and experience is something which has become an integral part of the Blueprint Service ethos. We really do live and breathe dentistry every day and believe that ‘We are what we service’. Our engineers are passionate about their roles, offer excellent technical advice and all round decent, old fashioned first-rate customer service.

Put all these together and we know that using Blueprint Dental will save you time and money, not to mention offering you the peace of mind that comes with knowing you’re in safe hands.

To find out more, please contact us using the form below or call our service team on 0800 228 9828.

 

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How to find the best dental equipment suppliers in London, UK

By Blog, NEWS

As a dentist or dental technician, you know the importance of having reliable and high-quality dental equipment and you want to make sure you’re getting the best quality products available.

When it comes to finding the best suppliers of dental equipment in the London area, and indeed the UK, there are many options to choose from and it’s important to do your research before taking the plunge.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss some important factors to consider when choosing a dental equipment supplier.

So, whether you’re looking for new equipment or just want to explore your options, read on for some helpful tips!

First Impressions Count

Where to start?

Many dental professionals will start with a search of potential suppliers’ websites. You’ll get an immediate feel for the supplier and perhaps even start to filter down your equipment choices based on the information on the website.

If you decide to fill in a contact form for a callback or to arrange a demo from the website, the response time for you to hear back from the supplier is often a good indicator of their levels of customer service and responsiveness.

Alternatively, you may have had a potential supplier recommended to you via a colleague and decide to make your first contact by phone. Again, you’ll get an immediate impression of the company, how knowledgeable and friendly its customer service team is and their ability to meet your requirements, all from that initial point of contact.

Do they represent top dental brands?

Which suppliers offer the top dental brands? You may well have a favoured brand in mind. One that you’ve used before or heard great things about, so this may help you with your search.

The most recognised and reputed dental brands across the world get the top picks of the best distributors and will have stringent requirements in place when awarding distributorships. After all, their own reputations are at stake here too.

So, our advice is to look at what brands a dental equipment supplier offers in their product portfolio. The top global dental equipment companies will only do business with distributors whose sales & customer service teams are properly trained on their products and whose service engineers carrying out routine or unplanned maintenance are factory trained.

And offer the latest product ranges?

This goes hand in hand with the branding section above. If you’re looking for some new kit, the chances are you’d like something sleek and modern from the latest ranges, whether you’re talking about a new dental chair or imaging unit for your dental practice or upgraded equipment for your dental lab.

Again, you’ll soon get the idea of who is offering cutting edge kit by having a browse on their website or making a quick call into the office.

Finding the Dream Team

So, you’ve got your eye on a couple of pieces of new, shiny equipment and it may well be available from more than one supplier. We know that. That’s life, but who are you going to put your faith in?

Sure, pricing is important and we’ll cover that later, but so is the relationship with the supplier.

In most cases a piece of equipment for your dental surgery or laboratory will last 7-10 years, so picking a team who you can work with, who offer industry-leading customer service  and who are going to be around to support you over the lifetime of your equipment is really important. You don’t want to be left high and dry after a couple of years with a supplier who no longer exists!

Choose a well established, long standing supplier with a professional and experienced team and, hey we’d say, if you can find a bunch of people who love the dental business and are great to work with, well that’s just an added bonus too!

After sales service must be second to none too

We’ll cover the importance of high quality after sales service in a separate blog, but suffice to say it’s really important. All kit needs maintaining to keep it in tip top working order, enabling you to keep a healthy flow of patients coming through your surgery.

Location & Response Time

Also consider where the supplier is located themselves. This is particularly important for dental practices in the London area, where travel time for the supplier to get to you may be extended if they are based outside of the area.

Their ability to support you will be impacted by the distance they need to travel to support you. And in the London area, we all know that even covering the shortest of distances can take a long time, so choosing a supplier with a local office and service support engineers will rapidly improve their response times to you.

Competitive Prices

You want the best deal, right? Of course you do!

But remember, there is always an element of ‘you get what you pay for’.

Seek out a supplier whose pricing for your project is fair, clear and, yes, competitive. It may not be the cheapest, but that doesn’t mean it’s not the best deal for you overall. Look at what the pricing does include and, perhaps more importantly, what it doesn’t, before committing your hard earned surgery cash to a project.

Ready to choose? Why not consider Blueprint Dental?

At Blueprint Dental, we’re pretty sure we can tick all the boxes we mention above.

Blueprint Dental is different and we’re proud of that fact.

Located in south west London, we are dedicated to providing our customers with the best possible and a deeply personal service, whether you’re a dentist or dental technician.

We pride ourselves on being the most recommended and trusted source of dental equipment and service in the London area, indeed in the UK as a whole. We carry only top-of-the-line products from leading global brands, so you can rest assured knowing that you’re getting the best possible value for your money. Plus, our team of experienced professionals is always on hand to help you find exactly what you need, no matter what your needs may be.

Make us your first port of call and contact us today to learn more about our products and services can help you and your patients.

 

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How to kickstart affordable dental CAD in your dental laboratory with Blender For Dental

By Blog, NEWS

We all recognise that the wide-ranging skills and traditional craftsmanship of 21st century dental technicians remain at the forefront of positive patient outcomes and satisfaction.

That said, there can be no doubt that the advent of digital dentistry techniques and workflows are becoming an increasingly evident influence in today’s technology-led dental laboratories.

Whether your dental laboratory is a ‘one man band’, annexed to a dental surgery or a bigger outfit with a multi-functional team of technicians, making that first move into the world of digital dentistry can be a scary prospect.

And an expensive one too, right?

Well, no, that doesn’t have to be the case!

Meet Blender For Dental.

Blender For Dental is a true global gamechanger and its beauty lies in the fact that it’s been designed by dental technicians for dental technicians.

And it’s affordable!

Sure, there’s a learning curve and maybe some new terms to get your teeth into, but the approach of the Blender For Dental team, coupled with support from UK sole distributors here at Blueprint Dental, mean you’re guided and supported at every stage, whilst maintaining your ability to use your artistic ability and, in most cases, the workflows you’ve put in place to meet your clients’ demands.

So, if you come across some new terms relating to the nuances of digital impressions and 3D printing – fear not – help is always at hand!

So, how did Blender For Dental all start?

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Well, to give you a potted history, in the 1990s a chap called Ton Roosendaal launched a free, open-source 3D software for creating, amongst other things, 3D printed models.

Fast forward a few years and the idea was seized upon by innovative dental technicians, Michael & Wolfgang Teiniker, who realised the potential of designing modules for dental CAD applications.

And what makes it so special?

Where do we start! There are a number of pure joys in the Blender For Dental approach, which will just delight you as a dental technician and have enabled it to happily flex its muscles against the big boys of dental CAD.

First up is that its basis is the free to download, open source, Blender software. Once you’ve installed that, all you need to do is purchase and download the modules you require for your business.

Easy peasy & economical.

Typically, you’ll spend no more than £300 getting yourself set up with the modules you need to get going.

The second point that you’ll just love about getting started with Blender is that there are no annual subscriptions or upgrade fees, so your on-going costs are significantly lower too.

And thirdly, the support is awesome.

Each module comes with an online tutorial and, what’s more, you can earn yourself valuable CPD points in the process of learning. And, if you’re ever flummoxed or stuck, the expert team at Blueprint Dental are always on hand to offer their industry-renowned support as well.

Plus, the aforementioned Blender For Dental architects, Michael & Wolfgang Teiniker, also remain actively involved in the blossoming Blender For Dental global community, hosting a weekly Zoom call in which dental technicians can explore many areas of the software that increase the user experience.

As dental technicians through and through, they remain very hands on and are open to any requests to change or add features. Feedback is really important to them and is used to frequently update and improve existing modules and in the development of new features and functionality.

How to get started

It all begins with the model creator module and grows from there.

Any type of dental model can be created from three file formats, STL, OBJ and PLY, in a straightforward, fast and logical way.

As we mentioned earlier there is some learning involved and the software operates in a different way from what we are used to.

But there’s no need to be put off.

It’s tempting to compare Blender to other popular CAD programs, but that could be construed as missing the point. Perhaps a more poignant way of approaching it is to rethink how appliances are manufactured in the digital world, whilst still enabling skilled dental technicians to express themselves through their work, ultimately providing the highest standards of patient satisfaction.

Once the basics have been mastered, the knowledge of how CAD programs operate becomes understandable, which in turn puts the power into the hands of the technician. With B4D you get to delve into a world of vertices, surfaces, and edges.

Now, show us a dental technician who doesn’t relish the thought of that?!

 

What modules are available?

Blender For Dental Guide designer

Guide Designer Module

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Gum Designer Module

Blender_For_Dental_Articluator_Module

Articulator Module

There are already a plethora of modules available to complement the model design module, enabling you to incorporate all areas of your dental laboratory workflow.

Currently you can set yourself up with modules for the following:

·  Gum design module

·  Splint design module

·  Tray design module

·  Crown and bridge work

·  Implant crowns and components

·  Blockout module

·  Articulator & facebow

·  ICP alignment tool

·  Guide designer

·  Gum Designer

·  Logo designer

·  Bleaching Trays

·  Bracket Remover

·  Diagnostic Wax up

The development of the software continues with more implant companies allowing their libraries to be used, expanding the variety available to users. The open-source theme runs alongside the software with users able to create their own tooth libraries and integrate them with the software.

Meet the expert

Andrew Wheeler of AW Precision Ceramics has been at the forefront of the introduction and use of Blender For Dental in the UK and is widely regarded as the UK’s specialist on ‘all things Blender’, as well as being an accredited trainer.

As an experienced and well-respected dental technician in his own right Andrew says of the software. “If you are starting out on the digital journey this is an excellent way to get on board. It is fully customizable and, in a market where CAD tends to take away the individuality of our work, Blender For Dental gives you a way of standing apart from the crowd. There are numerous options to design your models in a creative way and with the addition of adding your logo onto models and trays, your laboratory can stand apart.”

Andrew_Wheeler

In addition, our Sales and Marketing Director, Sharaz Mir, explains the ethos behind Blender For Dental. “Blender For Dental was set up by two Australian brothers whose vision was to bring affordable dental CAD to every dental technician who would like to embrace digital techniques.

“The software is easy to use and the team are approachable and flexible, always working to provide enhancements and push forward with new modules for both traditional design work and more complex orthodontic techniques.

“We would welcome anybody who would like to find out more to join one of our introductory webinars in which we discuss the merits of the Blender For Dental approach.”

So, in summary, yes, there’s a learning curve and yes adopting digital CAD technologies may take a little time to master.

But, one thing is clear. Putting your faith in the Blender For Dental approach will enable you to maintain your individual flair and craftsmanship, whilst adopting cutting edge and ever progressing digital technology in your dental laboratory.

And all whilst remaining in pocket and in control of your software and designs.

Find out more about how you can join the Blender For Dental community here.

We’d love to have you as part of the family.

We would like to acknowledge and thank Andrew Wheeler of AW Precision Ceramics for his input into this article.

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Surface decontamination in the dental surgery

By Blog

It’s no secret that surface decontamination is key to protecting patients and staff in the dental practice. But with so many products on the market, it can be difficult to know which ones to use and how to use them properly.

In this blog post, we’ll look specifically at a number of key areas of surface decontamination, which when treated with the right product(s), at the right intervals, with the right contact time will offer you one of the most effective ways to mitigate the potential spread of infection through surface decontamination in your practice.

So, how do you ensure that the risk of infection is minimised and the highest standards of disinfection achieved?

Well, as you’d expect with as wide a ranging and complex subject as infection control, unfortunately, there isn’t a single, simple answer!

There are many areas and workflows within the dental practice which require infection control processes to be regularly and comprehensively employed, from the reprocessing of dental instruments, to all the surfaces in clinical areas, including the dental chair and diagnostic equipment, to the basic hand hygiene of each and every person entering your dental environment.

Cleaning or disinfection?

Before we get our teeth into how to keep those pesky bugs at bay, let’s get one, often confused, fact put to bed: the difference between cleaning and disinfection…

Although often terms used in unison, they are not the same thing.

Cleaning is the removal of dirt and debris, usually in the presence of a detergent. In a dental environment this could well include bodily fluids released as the result of dental treatments, like blood, tissue, tooth and bone fragments or pus.

Disinfection is the inactivation or killing of microorganisms on a surface, using a disinfectant agent which is known to have antimicrobial properties.

Disinfection can only occur on a clean surface, so it is vital that the cleaning step takes place prior to disinfection (although, there are, of course, combination products available, which combine both steps).

So, now that’s sorted, let’s concentrate on disinfection. Surface disinfection to be precise.

We will leave instrument reprocessing and decontamination for another day.

 

Decontamination and disinfection of surfaces in a dental practice

Even by focussing just on surface decontamination within a dental practice, there are still several different areas to consider, all of which should be addressed individually and specifically.

In this blog we’ll take a look at:

·  Surface decontamination in the dental surgery

·  Decontamination of the dental chair

·  Hand Hygiene for patients, visitors and staff

Whichever area you’re looking at, we’ve got bags of experience in at Blueprint Dental, so we’re always on hand (excuse the pun!) to help you out with which product you need for which application, to strike that important balance between efficacy and material compatibility.

A little more on that too…

Efficacy v Material Compatability 

There needs to be a balance between the ability of the disinfectant to inactivate micro-organisms and its effect on the environment around it. It needs to be safe to use in the presence of humans, not leave potentially toxic residues around after use and leave the surfaces and equipment on which it is used unharmed.

Are you familiar with disinfectant rotation?

Disinfectant rotation is an important part of infection control in dental practices. It is the crucial process of regularly switching between different types of disinfectants in order to prevent the development of microbial resistance. Many disinfectant ranges will offer two alternatives, which can be safely rotated, often with colour coded labelling for clarity and ease of use.

Quaternary Ammonium compounds (often referred to as ‘Quats’) are effective disinfectants widely used as part of a rotational infection control plan in a dental setting.  

Disinfection of dental surfaces

So, now we know that infection control of surfaces is a critical activity in every dental practice and it’s important to make sure that all surfaces in the practice are clean and decontaminated regularly with products which are compatible with the surface and to rotate, if necessary, to reduce the risk of microbial resistance.

But, what about the different types of surface disinfectants available? 

Surface disinfectants can be split broadly into non-alcohol based and alcohol-based agents.

The method of applying the disinfectant usually correlates with the size of the area, with larger areas tending to be disinfected using spray-applied agents and smaller areas more likely to be treated with wipes.

Again material compatibility is of prime importance here.

Non-alcohol based disinfectants have excellent material compatibility and can be used is a wide variety of surfaces in the practice, but especially lend themselves to the leather or synthetic upholstery of the dental chair, hoses and handles on the treatment centre and any areas composed of plexi-glass or acrylic, like the dental light.

Dental chairs and treatment centres are a classic example here and are discussed in their own section below.

Non-alcoholic disinfectants have a short action time and when applied properly to a surface will continue to provide a long-lasting effect against the re-establishment of airborne bacteria and viruses.

 

Alcohol-based surface disinfectants are also widely available, cost-effective and have a broad spectrum of microbiological action. Again they can be sprayed directly onto the surface or applied using an impregnated wipe. Just make sure the material is compatible with alcohol before going ahead!

Is your dental chair decontaminated properly?

The dental chair is often the main touch point for patients during their visit, presenting the opportunity both to contaminate and be contaminated.

Disinfecting the chair between patients is a sure way of protecting your patients and staff, reducing the risk of cross-contamination, but with the possibility of many patients taking a seat in the chair each day, it is also important to ensure the upholstery and any other parts which are disinfected are not damaged by harsh chemicals constantly being used on their surfaces.

A non-alcohol based disinfectant is ideal here and provides excellent material compatibility which, as well as disinfecting, helps to maximise the longevity of the chair’s upholstery.

Hand Hygiene in the dental practice

Hand hygiene is one of the most important ways to protect yourself and your patients

Our hands are constantly coming into contact with micro-organisms, some of which have pathogenic capabilities.

Many scientific studies prove that hands are THE primary transmission path for pathogens.

Hand disinfection is therefore considered crucial for the prevention of nosocomial infections. In Europe alone, up to 5 million patients in hospitals and other healthcare facilities are infected annually with dangerous pathogens. A major reason for this is inadequate or even lack of hand hygiene. Comprehensive hand hygiene can reduce the rate of “acquired” infections by up to 40%.

But proper hand hygiene should also help to prevent skin problems and maintain the natural protective function of the skin. So, be sure to take this into consideration when selecting hand hygiene products for your practice.

As a result hand hygiene products often include a range of products including hand lotions and creams, as well as disinfectants themselves to ensure the natural balance of the skin in maintained. Alternatively, hand disinfectants may achieve this by incorporating additional soothing or lubricating ingredients into their formulation.

The method of dispensing may differ according to the location in the practice and the user of the hand hygiene products. For example, product in a public area of the practice intended primarily for patients and non-clinical staff may be a wall dispenser with automatic dosing, whereas a more specialist surgical hand wash with a broader range of efficacy for hand and forearm preparation prior to surgery would be in an area only accessible to clinical staff and bottle-based.

So, we have seen that regular and robust decontamination processes using the right product for the right surface should be right at the heart of every dental surgery’s infection prevention policy and procedures. When best practices are adopted the risk of cross-contamination will be minimised and the safety of patients, staff and visitors alike maximised.

We’d love to help you ensure you have the highest possible standards of hygiene in your practice and we’re pretty confident that we can sort you out with the right surface disinfection product for each and every area in your practice

You can get in touch to discuss further using the form below….

 

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Maximising hygiene and disinfection behind the scenes in the dental surgery

By Blog

Dental professionals are in a unique position to prevent the spread of infection.

The very nature of invasive dental work means there is an increased risk of infection and biological contamination. In addition to contamination caused by touching surfaces and equipment, dental procedures themselves can also generate contamination, both in the form of airborne aerosols and micro-organisms entering waste systems whilst remaining viable.

These factors create a constant need to maintain high standards of hygiene even ‘behind the scenes’ to protect patients, staff and visitors. It is these perhaps unseen areas we will focus on in this blog post.

So, how do you ensure that the highest standards of disinfection are achieved?

As you’d expect with a subject as complex as infection prevention, the answer is not simple!

One size doesn’t fit all.

There are many areas and workflows within the dental practice which require infection control processes to be regularly and comprehensively employed, from the reprocessing of dental instruments, to all the surfaces in clinical areas, including the dental chair and diagnostic equipment, to the basic hand hygiene of each and every person entering your dental environment.

Cleaning or disinfection?

Before we get our teeth into how to keep those pesky bugs at bay, let’s get one, often confused, fact put to bed: the difference between cleaning and disinfection…

Although often terms used in unison, they are not the same thing.

Cleaning is the removal of dirt and debris, usually in the presence of a detergent. In a dental environment this could well include bodily fluids released as the result of dental treatments, like blood, tissue, tooth and bone fragments or pus.

Disinfection is the inactivation or killing of micro-organisms on a surface, using a disinfectant agent which is known to have antimicrobial properties.

Disinfection can only occur on a clean surface, so it is vital that the cleaning step takes place prior to disinfection (although, there are, of course, combination products available, which combine both steps).

So, now that’s sorted, let’s concentrate on disinfection. We’re just going to look at three areas here:

 

  • Preventing contamination in dental water lines
  • Removing contamination from suctions lines and amalgam separators
  • Disinfection of dental Impressions

We’ll leave instrument reprocessing and decontamination for another day, as it’s a big topic in its own right.

Decontamination and disinfection in the dental practice

But, whichever area you’re looking at, rest assured that we’ve got bags of experience in at Blueprint Dental and are always here to help you out with which product you need for which application, to strike that important balance between efficacy and material compatibility.

A little more on that too…

Efficacy v Material Compatibility

There needs to be a balance between the ability of the disinfectant to inactivate micro-organisms and its effect on the environment around it. It needs to be safe to use in the presence of humans, not leave potentially toxic residues around after use and leave the surfaces and equipment on which it is used unharmed.

Disinfection of non patient-facing areas of the dental practice

Infection control is a critical activity in every dental practice. It’s important to make sure that all areas of the practice are clean and decontaminated regularly. This includes areas and equipment which is not necessarily patient facing, but nonetheless could present a serious biohazard if not incorporated into your decon processes.

The importance of ensuring dental water lines are decontaminated regularly

You’ve probably heard that dental water lines need to be decontaminated on a regular basis.

But what does that actually mean?

Left to their own devices there are a number of potential hazards which can be associated with water lines in and around the dental treatment centre. In this article, we’ll concentrate on the removal and prevention of biofilms and biological decontamination, but process water quality and the prevention of limescale deposits are also areas which need addressing. Again, perhaps another blog post for another day.

A broad spectrum anti-microbial agent, such as Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) offers long lasting protection against the build up of a biofilm and microbial contamination in water lines, whether these are associated with hand piece operation and cooling or bottle systems and spittoon operation. Some will even act as a limescale inhibitor too, which is an added benefit.

Some disinfectants are specifically tuned for continuous dosing of water lines in specific manufacturer’s treatment centres, some are used at regular interval according to your own decontamination protocols and others can be used as a biofilm removal agent. These are often slightly more concentrated solutions used in situations where a biofilm has built up within the water lines, following some maintenance procedures or before the treatment centre is first commissioned for patient use.

What about contamination in suction lines and amalgam separators?

Equipment which creates contamination as a result of particles and biological debris from the patient poses an immediate and constant contamination threat if left untreated.M2

Suction lines and amalgam separators should be decontaminated on an at least daily basis with a broad spectrum disinfectant effective against bacteria, fungi, viruses and mycoplasma (tuberculosis).

A word here also about disinfectant rotation…

As with many anti-microbial treatments, both inside and outside of the patient, consistent dosing with just one product can lead to the emergence of microbial resistance, which in turn increases the risk of contamination and/or decreased efficacy of your chosen disinfectant. For this reason, it is considered best practice to rotate the products used for disinfecting. For example on a weekly rotational basis. This will significantly reduce the risk of microbial resistance to the products used. Often the two rotational products will differ in pH. Look out for a manufacturer who can provide you will both products which are clearly labelled to show which rotational product is which in your regime.

These areas are also prone to the build up of odours, so a product with an integral deodoriser is also advantageous, as is one with enzymatic properties to break down proteinaceous material removed from the patient.

That said, care should also be taken to ensure that any disinfectant used in these areas and then discharged to drain are environmentally friendly and do not cause ecological damage after their release.

Some products used in this area can also be used to decontaminate spittoons, although specialist products are also available for this purpose.

Disinfecting dental impressions

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Dental impressions remain an important part of many patient procedures still carried out using non-digital technologies. Every day, dentists take impressions to create dental prosthetics such as crowns and bridges. However, these impressions can also be a breeding ground for micro-organisms if not disinfected correctly. In order to ensure the safety of patients, staff and technicians at the dental laboratory, it is important to properly disinfect these impressions before they are sent out for fabrication.

Ideally find yourself a ready-to-use solution with a short action time, which can be used on alginates, silicones and poly-ether rubber, as well as the impression trays themselves. That way you’ll be able to disinfect a wide range prosthetics, worn dentures and dental impressions.

Choose a formaldehyde-free and phenol-free product which is bactericidal, fungicidal, virucidal and, ideally, tuberculocidal too.

So, in summary, it’s clear to see that maintaining consistent and robust disinfection protocols are of utmost importance for all dental professionals. In this post, we’ve explored areas which are often not in direct patient contact, but which still form a vital part of the practice’s overall infection prevention and decontamination routines. Not only is this crucial for patient safety and that of your staff, but it also helps maintain the quality, reputation and longevity of your practice as a whole.

We’d love to help you ensure you have the highest possible standards of hygiene in your practice and we’re pretty confident that we can sort you out with the right disinfection product for the right application.

You can get in touch to discuss further using the form below….

 

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10 Top Tips For Starting Your Dental Squat Practice

By Blog, NEWS, What's New

For any ambitious dentist, the idea of opening a dental squat practice is an intriguing and exciting one. To get started you will need to take some steps that may seem daunting at first, but that can be broken down into manageable tasks which will see you well on the road to realising your dream practice in no time.

So, we’ve put together these 10 Top Tips to help you get started setting up your own Dental Squat Practice:

Top Tip #1 – Create a watertight business plan

Not the most thrilling place to start, huh? You just want to get on with the exciting stuff. Maybe, but sitting down and creating a comprehensive business plan doesn’t have to be like pulling teeth.

Setting yourself clear, achievable objectives will be key to your success AND prove invaluable if you need to obtain finance or attract business partners to your venture. Think about the business and personal goals you want to achieve over the short, medium and long term and write them down. It doesn’t need to be a weighty tome, but a little bit of upfront thought and planning now will save you time and money in the long run.

Top Tip #2  – Location, location, location!

Perhaps one of the most important and biggest decisions you’ll have to make is where to physically set your practice up.

Your surgery is nothing without patients, so think about how easily they can get to the practice. Ideally it needs to be easy to find and accessible. If the majority of your patients will travel by car, consider how easy it is to park nearby and whether there are parking charges. If patients travel by public transport, how good are the links? Where’s the nearest bus stop or train station?

The location of your dental surgery will also define your footfall from the surrounding area and passers-by. You’re more likely to get noticed on a busy road than a quiet side road or rural location.

Your patients should be front and centre of your location choice, but don’t forget your staff and even your own journey. How easy and far is your commute and is it easy for your team to get to and from work as well?

Also, it’s worth a quick scout around the area to see how close your competition is too. Are there other dental surgeries in the vicinity and how will you stand out from the crowd and differentiate your surgery?

Which leads us on nicely to…

Top Tip #3 – Your brand and identity

Here’s one of those exciting bits!

But there’s a serious element at stake here too. Everything from the way your surgery looks from the outside, the ambience of the reception area and waiting room, to the calmness and comfort of the treatment rooms will influence patient experience and their likelihood to recommend you to others. More on this later, but don’t underestimate word of mouth (No pun intended!)

Having a clever, funky logo and painting the practice your favourite colour is all well and good, but how the surroundings make the patient feel and the consistency of how you apply your brand are hugely important.

Some careful consideration upfront and consistent application of your brand from the start will go a long way to establishing you in your new neighbourhood.

Top Tip #4 – Choosing your equipment & fit out

Another area we all get excited about!

But this one really is of utmost importance and will affect the efficiency of how your practice runs, your workflows and patient experience. Ask yourself what equipment you really need to get your practice up and running.

Are you going to be offering chairside restorations and digital dentistry? Is space limited, so a knee-break dental chair may work better for patient access? What about decontamination workflows and the ‘unseen’ suction equipment every dental practice needs?

Do you need every piece of kit on your shopping list from the outset or can some be added or upgraded as your patient base expands?

Our golden nugget of advice here is to partner with a dental equipment supplier who has the experience and expertise of guiding you through setting up your first dental practice from its first inception to the day you open the doors to your first patients.

You’ll need someone who can help you with everything from dental surgery design & workflows, project management to make sure everything happens at the right time, in the right order and on budget to someone with the technical skills and expertise to execute on-site installation, commissioning and training, with the minimum amount of fuss and mess.

And, yes, here at Blueprint Dental, that’s right up our street and we’d love to discuss your project with you from an early stage.

Top Tip #5 – Financing your dream

 So, you’ve created that business plan, found your premises, thought about what equipment you need and even have some ideas about that funky logo…

Now it’s time for the really serious stuff…how are you going to pay for it all?

Well, the good news is there are some awesome specialist finance companies out there who can help you make the right financial choices as you start your business. They can provide you with illustrations and choices for lease purchase and rental options that will provide clarity for your payment plans and options as your business grows.

But, be sure to find yourself a good, reputable finance company, who understand the dental business as well as they do money matters.

In our eyes, you’d do well to find anyone better than Vector Finance, who we’ve worked with on many projects and will also be able to provide guidance on tax planning and efficiencies, as well as any government grants and schemes which you can take advantage of.

Cash flow is also an important consideration in the control of your finances. Make sure you are registered with all the right patient insurance providers and keep up to date with your treatment claims, as well as ensuring patients who pay for treatment do so before leaving the practice. That way, you’ll be in good financial health to make sure you’ve always got the cash to keep well stocked of the consumable items you need to run your practice and before you know it there’ll be enough left over to be drawing a decent income from the practice yourself too.

Top Tip #6 – Who’s in your dream team?

You’ll need to decide what your staffing structure should be from the start and how you might look to add to it as the practice becomes more established.

As tempting as it may be from a financial perspective to minimise wage costs and go it alone from the start, you should consider whether that works on a practical level. You are a skilled clinician, highly trained to perform intricate dental procedures on patients, not a jack of all trades also managing patient appointments, payments and rotas.

We’re assuming you’ll need a dental assistant, but also consider whether some administrative support in the shape of a Practice Manager or reception team would be prudent. With the greatest respect, we all know some superb dental surgeons who freely admit that admin is not their forte. And that’s not to mention that it can be pretty lonely managing all elements of the business on your own.

Maybe you just need some part time help when you first start, building up to a bigger and possibly full time team as time goes by.

Are you offering hygienist services? Do you have a spare surgery you can rent out to other dental professionals who may want to treat patients in your area? These are all things which are good to consider and discuss with your dental equipment supplier from the outset.

Top Tip #7 – Marketing Matters

Marketing your dental squat practice can be difficult, but it’s worth the effort and will pay dividends.

Research the best channels to reach your potential patients. This is likely to be a combination of digital channels like a website and social media, together with non-digital channels like advertising in local newspapers, leaflet drops and word of mouth (we said we’d come back to that and here we are!)

Make sure you make it easy for people to contact you. It might sound obvious, but make sure the telephone number and email address are easily seen. Check, recheck and then check again for spelling mistakes and typos (…we’re back to that brand and patient experience again)

And keep it simple. You don’t have to spend thousands on the swankiest website in town, but you should tie everything in with your brand and keep at it. Regular postings and contact with your potential clients will get people through the door. And as soon as you can get patient testimonials, do so,  and don’t be afraid to ask your satisfied patients to spread the word and recommend you to their own friends and family. Word of mouth really is a hugely powerful and wholly under-rated form of marketing.

Top Tip #8 – Get the legal stuff sorted

Taking on premises open to the public, whether you’re renting or buying, entering into financial agreements and potentially employing staff all come with legal implications.

Make sure you’re clear from the start what your legal obligations are and take legal advice to make sure you have everything in order. You don’t want any nasty shocks or surprises further down the line.

The same goes for any building regulations you may need to have in place before starting work on your practice, indemnities and liability policies when dealing with the public and dental-specific legalities around treatments and hazardous waste disposal.

Top Tip #9 – Keep your equipment in tip top working order

The smooth running of your practice once opened will be vital to your reputation and stress levels. The last thing you need is to have to cancel dental procedures due to faulty or unreliable equipment.

Talk to your dental equipment supplier about on-going maintenance routines early on when you’re specifying and choosing your kit.

Get an understanding of what the preventative maintenance schedules are, choose a supplier who has experienced and factory-trained engineers and maximise the uptime of your key pieces of equipment by choosing a dental maintenance team who can service your kit around your schedules to minimise the impact on your working day.

You may even be able to factor in maintenance costs to any lease purchase agreements, but however you’re financing your kit, don’t overlook this element and be sure to include it in any cashflow forecasts you create.

We’re pretty confident at Blueprint Dental that we tick all the boxes when it comes to keeping your squat practice in tip top working order too.

Top Tip #10 – Take time to enjoy your dream

So, you’ve done it! Your very own dental practice, all set up and running; a steady stream of patients coming through the door, some even recommended by their friends and families.

It’s been hard work, you’ve learned so much and you’ve worked incredibly long hours to get to this point, but we hope that with the help of an experienced and reputable dental equipment company, it’s been worth it.

Stop. Look around you and give yourself a minute to take in all that you’ve created, all that you’ve achieved for your patients, your team, your family and yourself.

Congratulations!

At Blueprint Dental, we’d love to be part of your journey to realise the dream of your squat practice. 

Drop us a line to discuss your dream today.

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Dr Soni discusses his decision to partner with Blueprint & Planmeca

By Blog, NEWS, What's New

Dr Soni, Implantologist & co-founder of the Practical Implantology courses takes us through why he chose to partner with Blueprint Dental & Planmeca as he introduced digital workflows to his Simply Dental, Twickenham implantology practice.

Watch the video to see how with the experience and expertise of Sharaz and the Blueprint team, together with Jonathan Hampton, the Planmeca technical team and a trip to the surgery with the Plan Demo van, Dr Soni was able to choose the right equipment to increase the number of referrals made to him and ultimately the quality of the treatment offered to patients.

The knowledge was phenomenal. He’s accelerated my digital experience, otherwise I probably wouldn’t have gone digital.

Dr Mukesh Soni, Simply Dental, Twickenham

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