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Solving Work Related Pain in Dentistry

How to Select an Ergonomic Dental Stool that fits YOU!

-Dr. Bethany Valachi-

When it comes to dental stools, one size does NOT fit all!  With all the varieties and optional features of dental stools on the market today, your unique body characteristics can be better fitted and supported than ever before!  However, when selecting a dental stool, we must now take a look at not only the stool features, but YOUR body features and the ability of the stool to optimally support those features.


Your dental stool selection & adjustment should depend on 6 factors:
  • Your unique lumbar curvature
  • Gender
  • Height
  • Body frame/size
  • Disc health
  • Operatory layout
One of the most important of these is your lumbar curvature. If you have an excessive lumbar curve (hyperlordosis) or a flattened lumbar curve (hypolordosis), you want to select a stool that will prevent worsening of the condition.  Proper adjustment is equally important!  For instance, you may have the correct stool, but improper adjustment could lead to back pain.
Excerpts from the CE Video Course, 
“Dental Stools & Low Back Pain: Selection, Adjustment, Therapies & Exercise to Prevent Pain”


Traditional stool with tilting seat & hypolordosis.
A tilting seat pan is the most popular style of stool on the market today.  With this style, your thighs slope slightly downward (15 degrees).  While this position puts the lumbar spine in a better position than sitting with the thighs parallel to the floor, recent research suggests that it still does not place the lumbar spine in a completely neutral position.
Hence, a traditional dental stool with tilting seat pan is an especially poor match for someone with a hypolordotic spine!  Unless they are in constant contact with the backrest, this could cause further flattening of the spine, pushing the disc posteriorly.


Saddle stool with hyperlordosis.

Saddle stools enable the thighs to slope downward steeply (45 degrees), and have been shown to improve lumbar curvature and reduce low back pain. However if you are hyperlordotic, (left) you should consider a different stool or make a corrective adjustment.




Imagine, having me select and adjust a stool for you! Wouldn’t that be awesome?  This is what I’ve (virtually) done with my new Dental Stools & Low Back Pain CE Video Course. In this course, I’ll show you:
    • An exercise to determine your lumbar curvature.
    • What types of stools are best for different spine curvatures.
    • How you should adjust specific stool types, based on your lumbar curvature, to prevent back pain.
    • 5 scenarios where armrests are mandatory!
    • Which backrests are best for herniated discs.
    • Which 3 stool styles are best for men.
    • Which stools are best for slender vs. full-bodied operators.
    • What depth of seat pan fits you best.
    • Operatory ergonomic modifications to prevent back pain.


You’ll have access to my DENTAL STOOL CUSTOM FITTING PORTAL, where you can select your stool based on your lumbar curvature, gender, height, body frame and disc health.  You’ll even find specific adjustment guidelines for certain stools based on your lumbar curvature!  Here is a sample of the format in the Dental Stool Custom Fitting Guide:

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Call Today:

P.O. Box 25552
Portland, Oregon 97298

Dr. Bethany Valachi

Beat Pain and Extend Your Career

Dr. Bethany Valachi has helped thousands of dental professionals for over 20 years, and is recognized internationally as an expert in dental ergonomics. Let Dr. Valachi help you work pain-free and take back your practice!

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