A hopeful dentist decides to build it green!
We had the privilege of speaking with a dentist in the Midwest this week who, after 10 years in practice, is building her dream practice. The problem: neither her dental supplier, office designer, nor her husband is supporting her choice to build it green. But guess who is 100% excited about it? Her middle child, who at only 6 years old, has gotten the whole family committed to recycling.
Since one of the most important things we do is help dental professionals and their teams use a green lens while constructing and updating their offices, our EDA team kicked into high gear.
Below are some of the soon-to-be green doctor’s questions and our responses:
What barriers do I use if I want to avoid all that plastic?
Many things that are wrapped in plastic in the dental office are appropriate for being wiped down with an eco-friendly surface disinfectant. We love the Sci-Can, Optim 33TB. A few things, like digital imaging sensors, still need to be covered with a disposable barrier.
Should I buy an autoclave or a Statim?
This is a question of capacity. I asked whether she planned to add a hygienist immediately and whether she would be the only doctor. Because she is starting out on her own, we recommended a steam autoclave because it gives her more flexibility than a Statim, which requires instruments to be used almost immediately after processing as they are processed without wrappers.
How do I get my designer to support my decision to use recycled building materials, like countertops made from recycled glass?
Our advice: change designers. No need to push a rock uphill. We know green dental practitioners throughout the world who have had great experience working with designers well versed in green building materials and design choices, often recommending things that can save energy, water and money, like LED lights. Check out EDA members Kuster Design and Enviromed Design for outstanding advice and direction.
Who will be attracted to my green office once it’s built?
Easy again! Wellness lifestyle patients who share the same values as the doctor herself: primarily women between the ages of 20 and 50 who are concerned about everything that goes in and on their children, a powerful group of consumers coined as “Eco-Moms”. These women generally make the dental decisions for their whole family and spend their time in all the same places as this doctor: at the soccer field, church, and school functions.
When is the best time to get my practice certified through the EDA’s GreenDOC™ program?
Now! We let the doctor know that it’s easiest to build a green practice from the beginning and that we are here to help her, every step of the way.
Are you contemplating building the green practice of your dreams? We’re here to partner with you, so click here and get started.