About Ask the Dentist

My name is Dr. Mark Burhenne DDS (Dr. B). My mission is to empower you to get out of pain, take control of your dental health, and get the answers you need for optimal well-being.

What I Can Do For You

How did you get here? Maybe you’re in pain right now. Or perhaps you’re a parent who wants to know if it’s safe to have fluoride in baby formula. Maybe you’re one of 45 million people in the United States who don’t have dental health insurance and you’re looking for answers for yourself or your family.

Whoever you are, I’m here to help. Whether you send me an email, post on my Facebook Page, or leave a comment in one of my articles, I try to respond. Please keep in mind that I can’t make diagnoses via the Internet, and I often cannot reply to these inquiries.

“Every patient carries her or his own doctor inside.”
- Albert Schweitzer

Taking control of your health is up to you. There’s a lot of biased health information out there, even on big, trusted health websites – you’d be surprised how often the health news item of the day comes straight from some company’s press release. I tell all of my patients and my readers to always ask who is funding a study and why. A huge part of taking control of your health is checking the facts and always getting a second or even third opinion.

I believe in taking personal responsibility for everything that has ever happened or will ever happen to you – and this applies to dental health. I am convinced that this is the best, most proactive, effective way to live life. Now, more than ever, you cannot simply hand over your health to others. I am passionate about helping you to take control of your dental health.

My Health Philosophy

In one word – prevention. The best remedy in dentistry is prevention. Preventing disease is always the better model, both financially and medically.

50% of the US population only sees a dentist when in pain. This is an alarming statistic when you consider the impact regular check-ups and good oral hygiene habits can have in disease prevention. Regular visits to the dentist are just as important as regular check-ups with your doctor. Oral health is essential to overall health – if your gums are bleeding, you are unwell.

We so often neglect our mouths and our teeth by ignoring painful symptoms, not brushing properly, or not getting regular check-ups, but the health of the mouth is key to health of the overall body! Think of it this way: If your scalp started to bleed when you brushed your hair, you’d see a doctor right away. Yet, most people see blood when they brush or floss their teeth, and ignore it.

How Ask the Dentist Began

I started answering oral health questions on the web back in 1996 with my first website, virtual-dentist.com. The website soon became one of the top 3% of sites visited on the internet, which probably isn’t saying much in 1996 – but that’s when I realized that people are asking questions long after their visit to the dentist – and they’re asking them on the web.

As my practice in Northern California began to grow and my three daughters came along, Virtual Dentist took a backseat and I eventually stopped writing.

Then, in 2010, one of those daughters learned how to code. She got me back on the web with Ask the Dentist, and I’m back to writing articles and making videos to get the answers out to not just my own patients, but people around the world.

More about Mark Burhenne DDS

I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a B.S. in Biochemistry and B.A. in History of Art and had the privilege of attending the University of the Pacific Dugoni School of Dentistry in San Francisco, consistently ranked among the best in the US.

I am an active member of several continuing education groups and study clubs in prosthetics and periodontology that perform actual clinical work on patients. I have worked as an expert witness in legal dental cases. I’ve also volunteered as a dental surgeon in Jos, Nigeria.

I raised three daughters without cavities (all without ingestion of fluoride). I enjoy downhill skiing, alpine touring, mountain biking, photography, and listening to jazz and classical records (you know, those flat analog 12-inch vinyl discs).

I am passionate about restoring teeth to their original function and beauty – and as someone who studied art history and is a hobbyist photographer, the intersection of art and the opportunity to help people makes dentistry my dream profession.

I welcome your comments and questions and encourage you to like my Facebook page or follow me on Twitter to get the latest on oral and dental health.

Ask the Dentist is for you, so I want to know, what would you like answered on Ask the Dentist? Tell me here.

Special thanks to my patients and readers for helping me get the truth out there.

Mark Burhenne DDS