About Dr. Rolfe

About Dr. James G. Rolfe, D.D.S.


Dr. James G. Rolfe, D.D.S.

My name is James Rolfe, DDS, and I decided when I was eleven years old to be a dentist. I Iove dentistry, working with my mind, and meeting the challenges each day. I am the only local general dentist with his own dental lab, making my own crowns and bridgework, and the only general dentist on the SB Cottage Hospital medical staff. I built my dental office with my own hands. In addition, for the last fifteen years, I have been building dental clinics in Afghanistan from shipping containers and training young Afghans to operate them.

Most people experience some anxiety in the dental office, often as the result of previous experiences at the dentist. This becomes a barrier between the patient’s perception and the dentist’s need to provide treatment. The dentist must work through this barrier while providing the treatment. This effort takes away from his ability to focus on the dental procedure he is undertaking. If the dentist could focus more on the procedure and not have to deal with the patient’s anxiety, he could do better work. But he cannot, and often the treatment is less than ideal. As a result,  the patient is often affected in a negative way making it harder to continue seeing the dentist in the future.

The key around this is to be more relaxed at the dentist. But how can this be accomplished when just the thought of going to the dentist causes nervousness?


At the onset of the visit, we establish trust with people that we will be careful and take our time, always telling them what to expect. Next, there are plenty of things to focus the attention upon, like nature videos and interesting music, so that the images in the mind are relaxing and soothing. All of these gentle stimuli work together to create new images in the mind, displacing old thoughts. Over time, phobias disappear and new attitudes emerge, allowing people who formerly avoided the dentist to enjoy good dental health to preserve their teeth, keep their beautiful smiles, and enjoy eating. This is our goal and the work that we do every day.


Hospital Affiliation

Cottage Health Hospital

Dr. James Rolfe is the only general dentist affiliated with the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital staff. Being a hospital staff dentist requires certifications not usually expected of other dentists. He works closely with the hospital staff and emergency room, providing 24-hour care for referrals of emergency patients. Dr. Rolfe has been on the hospital staff since 1984.


Local Activist

Our staff is involved with local civic issues and social problems and constantly striving to be an active part of making our beautiful city a better place to live in. We realize that we are an integral part of society, so we take our involvement with the community and its issues quite seriously.


Summer Solstice Participant

Dr. Rolfe and the staff participate annually in the Santa Barbara Summer Solstice Parade, fabricating costumes and sharing their creativity with more than 100,000 annual observers along the parade route. Dr. Rolfe feels that the creative spirit of the parade is symbolic of the freedom that we enjoy as citizens and that it is our responsibility to empower our creative expressions to exemplify that freedom. His office contains many of the colorful and creative costumes worn since the beginning of the parade many years ago.


If you are experiencing a dental emergency, be sure to let us know so we can make arrangements for Dr. Rolfe to see you as soon as possible.

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