Welcome! My name is Dr. Mark Burhenne, or Dr. B for short.
When did we start seeing the mouth as separate from the rest of the human body?
The mouth doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It is intimately connected to the health of the rest of the body.
In fact, the bacteria and entire environment inside the mouth are connected to the rest of your body so intimately that the state of your oral health can predict whether you’ll have heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes.
In my 30 years of practice as a dentist, I’ve seen a lot of misinformation and people who have fallen through the cracks due to our healthcare system’s failure to understand the oral-body connection.
I created this blog to empower people to understand how your mouth is a window into the health of the rest of your body.
It is my sincere hope that the knowledge and tools on this blog will lead to greater health and well-being for you and those you love.
Throughout this website you’ll find high quality articles and free resources for getting and staying healthy. It’s the info I use to keep myself and my family healthy, and how I treat my patients.
Taking Back Our Oral Health
Our mouths are under attack, and it’s no wonder dental health is in such a bad state.
The big oral health brands run advertising convincing us that we need to sterilize our mouths morning and night and that we have to swish with pesticides, alcohol, and other chemicals to “be healthy.”
Fluoride, while effective in strengthening tooth enamel when used properly, is being shoved down our throats, and fluorosis in children is on the rise.
Empowering yourself with information is crucial to make the choices that determine the future of your health. And that’s exactly why I created this blog.
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.
Join the Ask the Dentist Community
You’ll get my weekly newsletter with tips that will help you achieve your healthiest mouth ever.
How Ask the Dentist Began
I started answering oral health questions on the web back in 1996 with my first website, virtual-dentist.com (click here to see a snapshot of it from 1996!).
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, something amazing happened.
“Why aren’t you blogging, Dad?”
“Dad, you have such a great URL, when are you going to start up your website again?”
My daughters got me back on the web with Ask the Dentist with their technical know-how, 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.
The Ask the Dentist Team
I simply could not be answering questions online if it weren’t for my three daughters.
Our site has grown immensely, and Ask the Dentist simply would not exist without their help. Because of the work they do for the blog, I’m able to have time when I come home from work to answer your questions and write more articles.
Catharine Burhenne-Sanderson wears many hats for Ask the Dentist. She is our editor and webmaster for Ask the Dentist. We’re lucky to have her helping with our social media as well, since she’s worked for Facebook and Twitter. She has a husband and the two of them live nearby and have a pomeranian named Biscuit.
Elisabeth Burhenne is our photographer extraordinaire. The headshot that you see at the top of this website and on all our social media profiles was taken by her. She studies business at New York University. She is passionate about animals, biology, and the outdoors and has a rescue cat named Ender.
Marie Burhenne is our YouTube Channel Producer and a film student at Purdue University. This picture is from her senior charity league graduation in March of 2014. She is an exceptional soccer player, skier, foodie, and movie lover.
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.
Ask the Dentist is for you, so I want to know, what would you like answered on Ask the Dentist?
Tell me what you’d like me to answer in my next Q&A blog post at [email protected]
To your health,
Sign Up for My Free Newsletter
The most powerful thing oral health can do for you isn’t a pretty smile — it’s a longer, healthier life.
Get my best free materials for keeping you and your family healthy with my free newsletter.