There are probably very few people who wake up one morning during their teenage years, and think: “You know what? I want to be an interior designer for a dentistry office when I grow up!” Architect, maybe. Interior design, perhaps.Dentist, not impossible. But someone who makes a living by designing the interior of a dentist practice? There can’t be many people who aspire to do that – and yet someone does it, every year and every time that a new dentistry office is built. It is astonishing really that someone has found a passion in that area when most of us would not want to spend all of our time thinking about the inside of a dentist’s office, so why do people do it? What do they get out of being an interior designer for a dentistry office?
Well, the first and obvious answer is that they get paid to do it. It’s a job, one that pays the bills – and if the numbers about working in dentistry are anything like true, then perhaps it is not bad money at all! It can be difficult to find work as an interior designer in some parts of the country, and San Diego is particularly notorious because there are just so many interior designers here hoping to make a living. When someone offers you money to do a job, you are unlikely to turn them down just because they happen to be a dentist’s office rather than a law firm.
Secondly, there are plenty of dental offices around, and therefore plenty of business out there! If you started to count up the number of San Diego dentists alone you would find a pretty impressive number, and those are just the ones here, in this town. When you start to multiply that across the state, and then the whole country, you can start to get an idea about just how impressive the market is for interior designers that are willing and able to consider a dental office. When the opportunities are that large, there is usually space for everyone to get in on the action.
Thirdly, and this is the one that most people either forget or completely ignore, there is something rather noble about wanting to make a dental office more appealing and more welcoming. If we are completely honest with ourselves, we would say that often a trip to the dentist is not a pleasant one, and the way that a building looks and feels from the inside – and the outside – can have a huge change on the way that a person feels about it. The choices that someone makes around lighting, windows, color, fabrics . . . they all add up to create an impression of either safety or clinical coldness, and being able to create a warmer and more friendly environment for people who are a little nervous of the dentist is really quite a wonderful thing. It is very fulfilling: far more fulfilling than designing a home that no one will live in, or a lawyer’s office that no one really visits.
Any San Diego dentist would love to have their interior office re-designed as they understand the importance of creating a space that makes people feel at home. They do not want their patients to feel anxious; they want them to feel warm and comfortable, not stressed and looking forward to coming back. An interior designer can do that to a San Diego dentist’s office within a few days, and if that is not a skill worth having, we don’t know what is.