In the chair with…Dr Chris Ball

Dr Chris Ball discusses his experience buying a new dental chair, including considerations, compromises, and comfort.

Dr Chris Ball discusses his experience buying a new Stern Webber dental chair, including considerations, compromises, and comfort.

Why did you need to consider the purchase of a new dental chair?

We have just set up a brand-new dental practice, Dentistry by Cure Clinics, based in Preston in Lancashire.

It is a squat practice which we created having acquired two commercial retail units on a small retail site. So, we needed to fit out the whole place from scratch.

Installing the four chairs in the dental surgeries was a key decision as it is at the core of the clinic and our patient-focused ethos.

How does dental chair selection fit into your patient-focused ethos?

Opting for the right dental chair is part of our bigger, overarching strategy of empowering the patient and changing their experience of dentistry.

We feel that the smallest details – such as providing them with the most comfortable and attractive chair – has enabled us to meet the highest standards of personal care.

In addition, we are confident that this enhances the patient’s overall experience

Dr Chris Ball discusses his experience buying a new dental chair, including considerations, compromises, and comfort.

Why did you opt for a Stern Webber chair?

As part of this project, we have been working with a team from RPA Dental. I have really valued and trusted Adam Shaw’s recommendations and advice.

When we discussed what we were trying to achieve with the practice, ie a seven day a week practice delivering everyday dentistry, as well as comprehensive care from complex root canal treatment to implants, Adam raised the question about the most appropriate chair to help us treat a wide gamut of patients.

He brought the conversation around Stern Webber range and, in particular, the 320 and 220 models. He explained that they offer easier maintenance from day-in/day-out use to servicing. This suited our vision most effectively.

The 320 model we have chosen has the in-built endodontic and implant modules as well as an EMS piezo scaler. I also really like the ergonomics of the chair, in particular its hybrid functionality of the ambidextrous model.

I am a left-hander, but most of my team are right-handed. Therefore, having the ability to jump into any of my four surgeries and be able to switch so easily to a left handed position was a very attractive feature for me too.

The upholstery is also gorgeous and the patient’s comfort has really been thought about too.

Is your Stern Webber particularly suitable for certain clinical applications, and if so, why?

We have opted for the 220 and 320 models. They are both highly suitable for delivering everyday dentistry right through to complex restorative treatments and periodontal care.

We have the 320 model in the two surgeries which are predominantly dentist-led. As a result, all the endodontic functionality is there for all the different types of root canal treatment systems depending on the preference of the clinicians.

I may choose to use a single file system whilst my other dentist might choose a multi-file system. In addition, our dentist with a special interest in endodontics might wish to customise the torque and the speed depending on his clinical needs.

All clinicians can pre-set the chair position. It is very intuitive, very personalised and very adaptive as well.

The procedure in between appointments is very easy and quick too.

What compromises were you not prepared to make when purchasing a new dental chair?

The ability to have a chair which could cater for both right and left-handed clinicians is something I no longer wanted to compromise on.

Patient comfort was also really important and a non negotiable.

How user friendly is a Stern Webber chair for all team members to use? 

The clinical team are operationally very happy with the functionality of the chair. The nursing team are also very pleased with their easy maintenance.

In addition, we have received such positive feedback from patients who attest to the comfort levels and impressive aesthetics of the new chairs.

Dr Chris Ball discusses his experience buying a new dental chair, including considerations, compromises, and comfort.

How real is back pain and physical fatigue when performing surgery?

Back pain can be debilitating. It is important that staff work in the best conditions.

RPA recommended accompanying treatment provider chairs which we sit on.

Thanks to the ergonomics of the Stern Webber chairs, we are able to move very near the patient without compromising our backs. We can also ensure that patients are in a comfortable position during the entire session.

It makes a real difference to our physical wellbeing and the successful outcomes of the treatments we provide.

What support did you get from RPA Dental?

RPA Dental has supported us all the way through from chair selection to the engineering and installation, to the handover and training.

They have handheld us through the first few weeks whilst we have got to grips with the full functionality of the chairs. We also have peace of mind that any query or concern we might have will be answered fast and efficiently.

RPA Dental has really been instrumental throughout this project and we would genuinely not look anywhere else if we had to do this again.

Naturally, equipment can be temperamental at times regardless of the brand.

However, we have an extra layer of assurance and knowledge that someone can be at the end of the phone and assess if something can be fixed remotely or if an engineer needs to visit, whenever we need it and that level of service is priceless.

For more information about Stern Webber chairs at RPA Dental please visit:

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