Dr. Larry's interest in a career in dentistry developed long before he took undergraduate course work in the late 1970s for his Bachelor of Arts degree in Biological Science at the University of California Santa Barbara. Throughout his childhood he had the opportunity to watch his father's dental practice flourish, through hard work and unbridled dedication to his patients. A true family business since Larry's dad, Dr. Martin Brownstein, hung out his shingle in Sausalito back in 1955.
In 1982, Dr. Larry drove back north up the California coast to attend the University of the Pacific Arthur Dugoni School of Dentistry ( UOP ) in San Francisco. UOP offered Dr. Larry stellar didactic and clinical training, with the added bonus of being just across the Golden Gate from his father's practice. Dr. Larry was able to spend quality mentor time at the office, throughout his education, picking up some great practical tips from his father.
After obtaining his DDS degree in 1985, Larry journeyed to the south Caribbean islands of Trinidad & Tobago. There he volunteered his new found skills to the less privileged children living in the shanty town of Beetham on the outskirts of the capital of Port of Spain. Larry provided dental care to the kids attending the trade school of S.E.R.V.O.L., SERvice VOLunteered For All, a grass roots alternative educational setting. The school was developed by Fr. Gerard Pantin, whose dream for helping Trinidad's youth became a Nobel prized model of education for children worldwide.
That overseas opportunity proved to be invaluable in many different ways.
First was the emersion into a culture that was so very different to his own. So inviting were the people of SERVOL and every Trinidadian he encountered, that Larry became an honorary "Trini" in no time. A true education unto itself.
He also gained a tremendous amount of practical dental experience and confidence delivering care to the kids of SERVOL. Due to the high refined sugar diet of the local kids, tooth decay ran rampant. The tiny clinic, where Dr. Larry acted as administrator, general dentist, specialist and hygienist, was busy 24/7. He allotted a tremendous amount of time to diet and oral hygiene counseling. This experience lead to his acquiring a deep sense of voluntarism. Upon his return to Marin, Dr. Larry served on many committees and volunteer groups through the County Dental Society including Adopt-A-School, Head Start and the Marin County Dental Care Foundation.
Lastly, his time in Trinidad, allowed Dr. Larry to discover and bring back with him a treasure from the island depicted in Daniel Defoe's 1917 novel Robinson Crusoe. He met the love of his life, Kirsten. They have been married since 1989. Their wonderful son, Kai, joined the team in 2002.
Between 2004 to 2007, Dr. Larry's attention was diverted to the alternative world of "Biological" Dentistry.
Through personal family experience with is own son, on how environmental toxins can effect us, Dr. Larry began to question and research how he was delivering care to his patients. What made him look beyond the blinders of main stream dentistry? Mercury ( Hg )! The most non-radioactive neurotoxin known to mankind. The connection occurred during his first Autism conference he attended in 2004. Dr. Mark Geier and his son David, spoke about prenatal mercury exposure and the incidence of Autism. One of the exposure modalities was preexisting "silver" or "amalgam" fillings in the mother's mouth. "Silver" fillings were bad? Not according to his professors. Sure silver was mixed with mercury, but it is an inert substance. This was a shocking revelation. The Geiers guided Dr. Larry to the IAOMT.
Dr. Larry eventually attended a conference and subsequently joined the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology ( IAOMT ) http://www.iaomt.org . This international group of dentists, physicians and research scientists recognize the impact of materials on our oral and systemic health. He also became a member of The Dental Wellness Institute, an organization concerned with health-based dental issues and mercury detoxification. http://www.dentalwellness4u.com
Dr. Larry has been mercury-free since 1995 AND mercury-safe since fall 2007. He practices complete Biological Dental care. The safety and health of his patients and staff is of the utmost importance to him.