The Caring Dentist opened its doors in Newport News in October of 1992 and has been cultivating a friendly environment ever since. “We love to see families and are great with the special needs population. We provide lots of services from fillings and crowns to simple root canal treatments and extractions,” says practice owner, Dr. Ross Epstein. Dr. Epstein’s team includes three dental assistants, two full-time hygienists, two administrative assistants, an office manager and himself.
The dental team prides itself on its family atmosphere. “We are a small, loving and caring family, always growing. Everyone is welcome at The Caring Dentist,” says Epstein.
Epstein’s love of helping people and passion for dentistry is evident. When asked the best part of his job, he spoke fondly of his patients. “My favorite part about my job is connecting with people. I have made some of my most meaningful relationships with my patients,” he says.
While some people may fear dental visits, Epstein and his team work hard to change ideas about what the dentist should be like. Epstein loves to meet new patients and get to know them. “Often, people who come to see us are frightened from past experiences, and we strive to change their perception of what dentistry should be,” Epstein says. The team at The Caring Dentist works hard to live up to its name. Epstein is known for his nearly pain-free injections, and he wants his patients to know they are cared for and in good hands. About 24 to 32 patients visit daily, excluding emergency visits.
Enter the offices of The Caring Dentist and fears are allayed with the collection of antique dentistry pieces on display. “My grandparents were my idols growing up, and their love for antiques and history has been passed down to me. Since graduating from dental school, I have been able to consistently grow my collection,” Epstein says. He is also president of The American Academy of the History of Dentistry and has had the opportunity to set up exhibits of antique pieces at national museums around the country.
Epstein and his wife, Linda, love to take road trips around the East Coast, stopping in places such as Lancaster, Pennsylvania, to learn about and buy antique dental pieces. When asked if he had a favorite antique piece, Epstein was quick with a passionate response. “Hands down my 1882 rosewood and ivory dental cabinet! It has been with me since 2001,” the dentist says. While many patients stop by on their visit to look at the small museum, the public is welcome to come as well. “The pieces are still available to be seen in our small museum. We ask visitors to call ahead if they would like to stop by to see the antiques,” Epstein says.
The Caring Dentist keeps Epstein busy, but he makes time for other enjoyment. “I have a lot of family and I love spending time with them, but when I am not with them, I love to go antique-guided traveling,” Epstein says.
Epstein was born and raised in Newport News. “Kiln Creek was actually my family farm growing up, with our house where the Chick-fil-A is located,” he says with a twinkle in his eye. With deep roots in Newport News, this dentist is glad to be serving his patients at The Caring Dentist.