Friday, January 28th, 2022

Shopper Client Stories


DR. KEVIN ROSS OF MIDGETTE FAMILY DENTISTRY

A commitment to personalized patient care

by Rob Lauer



Located in the heart of Chesapeake's Western Branch area, Midgette Family Dentistry has, for decades, enjoyed a well-earned reputation for making patient well-being their top priority. Knowing that oral health is vital to one's overall general health, its friendly, dedicated staff do all they can to make patients feel comfortable and relaxed. The practice's personable approach to patient care makes it an ideal home for its newest team member, Dr. Kevin Ross.Born and raised in Montgomery County, Maryland, Dr. Ross grew up with a keen interest in science. "I particularly enjoyed biology and chemistry," he recalls, "and was always very intrigued by human anatomy and physiology. Naturally, I was interested in a career in the health professions where I could combine my knowledge of science with helping people."

At the University of Maryland in College Park, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Neurobiology and Physiology, doing undergraduate research in neuroscience and early brain development.

"Initially, I was interested in getting a medical Ph.D.," he continues, "but after spending a summer working in a trauma hospital, I realized something: nurses got to spend a lot more time interacting directly with patients than the doctors did. The physicians would come in, examine a patient, prescribe treatments, and then move on to the next patient. Often it was the nurses and other medical staff who administered the actual care. That direct interaction with patients was what I craved. I wanted to be in the room with them, talking with them, assessing their condition, and personally overseeing their treatment plans rather than leaving that to others. Dentistry offered me the opportunity to do just that."

Adjusting his focus, Kevin earned a doctorate from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry in Baltimore and then practiced hospital dentistry in York, Pennsylvania. "Performing dentistry in a hospital setting was an invaluable experience," he notes. "I treated patients in the operating room-patients of all ages, many with medically compromised conditions."

Through colleagues in Hampton Roads, he learned that Midgette Family Dentistry was looking to add a new doctor to their team. The practice was convinced that Dr. Ross's passion for personalized patient care made him a perfect fit; he was impressed that they not only used the latest available dental technology but were committed to putting patients at ease.

"One of the most rewarding aspects of dentistry is when I can show someone how pain-free proper dental care can be," Dr. Ross explains. "I get a lot of satisfaction providing patients with a comfortable, stress-free experience-particularly if their past experiences with a dentist were stressful. Many patients avoid dental checkups because they're anxious and scared. As a result, their oral health can be really bad in some cases. The most rewarding part of my job is not only providing services that improve their oral health and systemic health, but also combating their fears so that they're no longer scared of going to the dentist and getting their teeth cleaned."

"Direct interaction with
patients was what I craved.
I wanted to be in the room with them,
talking with them, assessing their condition, and personally overseeing
their treatment plans rather than leaving that to others.
Dentistry offered me the
opportunity to do just that."
                                                       -Dr. Kevin Ross




Many people neglect regular checkups because they think of dentistry as cosmetic: one goes to the dentist merely to maintain a pretty smile; those satisfied with the appearance of their teeth have no need for a dentist.

Dr. Ross is quick to point out the fallacy of such thinking. Dental care is, first and foremost, medical in nature and essential to maintaining one's overall health.

"Much of the medical research conducted over the past ten years has linked many of the diseases that people have in their mouths to other diseases," he points out. "One of the most recent findings links periodontal disease (gum disease) to how people react to the COVID 19 virus. When left untreated, periodontitis leaves people open to more significant risks with heart disease and diabetes. In some cases, when we've treated a patient's gum disease, we've seen their diabetes improve. If someone is suffering from a toothache, it will affect how and what they are able to eat; that directly affects nutrition. If they're in pain, they can lose sleep, which affects their ability to function physically and focus mentally. The health of one's mouth is more connected to one's overall health than most people realize. In fact, several systematic health issues can be detected first in the mouth. For instance, anemia (iron deficiency) can initially manifest itself in one's oral health."

"One of the most rewarding aspects of dentistry
is when I can show someone how pain-free
proper dental care can be."
                                                       -Dr. Kevin Ross


"Regularly flossing is the easiest thing people can do daily to ensure their oral health," Dr. Ross continues. "Even though most people already do a decent job of brushing their teeth, many of them become upset when they end up getting cavities anyway. Cavities are usually the result of inadequate flossing. There's an old saying in dentistry: 'Floss the teeth you want to keep.' Brushing only cleans the front, back, and biting surfaces of the teeth. Flossing is the only way to get between the teeth and remove the food and plaque that builds up over the day. It would make a big difference in their oral health if people flossed once at night before going to bed.

"When we sleep, our mouth stops secreting saliva and dries out," Dr. Ross says. "Saliva is good at preventing cavities. Anything we can do to get the teeth squeaky clean helps. Just before going to bed, brush, floss, and use an oral rinse. The most effective oral rinses usually contain fluoride, which prevents cavities. After rinsing, don't drink anything-not even water. By not drinking after rinsing, the fluoride remains in the mouth and on the teeth, helping to prevent cavities while we sleep."

Of course, even when brushing, flossing, and rinsing daily, regular dental checkups are as essential to maintaining good overall health as routine physical exams with one's family physician.  Dr. Ross is excited to bring his experience, concern, and commitment to patients in Western Branch and across Hampton Roads.

"I'm very excited to be a part of Midgette Family Dentistry," he smiles, "and to know that I have behind me the technology and team to provide the local community the highest quality of care available."




Midgette Family Dentistry

3326 Taylor Road
Chesapeake, VA 23321

757-483-4700
http://www.midgettefamilydentistry.com