The Dentist’ Chair: Furniture As An Instrument Of Torture

The dentist’ chair has been around for quite some time making patients feel relatively at ease and relaxed during their operation. It offers a good amount of features in an effort to provide customers with the best experience possible. With that being said, the dentist’ chair that we are using today is unlike the ones people were using in the past. When comparing it to historical dentists’ chairs – how does the modern one look to help with relaxation and comfort while still being functional? Also, how about patients’ fears of the dentists’ chair and the archetype of the sadistic, even perverted dentist, taking pleasure from inflicting pain?

The first dentist’ chair was basically made of wood having no head rest at all. The experience used to be painful both for patient and dentist in terms of ergonomy. In some cases, patients are even asked by dentists to lay on the floor to give them a better view and access to the patient’s teeth while he was performing a dental extraction which makes very inconvenient. Furthermore, the use of anesthetics was not popularized way back in the past making it much troublesome as well as painful for patients to sit through on during their visit to the dentist.

A common misconception is that dentists love inflicting pain to their patients which is definitely untrue. However, a number of cases that revolves around medical malpractice in the field of dentistry have been reported back in the days giving birth to patient’s fear of dentists making it relatively hard for some to go to their clinic even for a checkup. As such, the idea of going to the dentist can be a very stressful experience to some. With that being said, the history of the dental chair shows that the field of dentistry is constantly changing in an effort to improve both its practices for the benefit of the patient as well as to ease the work of the dentist.

An American dentist named Josiah Flagg in 1790, created the first ever head rest used for dental chair that aims to keep the head in a fixed position throughout the entire dental procedure. His design was used by several individuals for quite some time until the introduction of reclining chairs some forty years later. Chairs have received their fair share of innovation drastically changing their appearance as well as their function.

Dentist’ chairs today are now made with greater comfort in mind and this is quite apparent as they are ergonomic and built out of aluminium combined with plastic features and padding. There is no need for patients to adjust their position especially since these chairs can do all of the adjusting for them. This in turn provides their clients with a huge amount of convenience as they can leave everything in the hands of a professional. Furthermore, dentists also have full control over these chairs which allows for quick repositioning to suit the preference and needs of their clients at any given time.