Let’s Talk about Mercury Fillings
by Dr. Martina Mallery, DDS
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, dental offices are the main contributors of environmental mercury pollution. This problem has become so severe, there is now a mandate waiting approval that will require all dentists to equip their practices with a mercury scavenging system called an amalgam separator. This amalgam separator collects the material from the fillings for proper disposal. This begs a question: if the mercury fillings are considered a severe hazard for the health of our environment, would it be possible that these fillings could also have a negative impact on the health of the person having those fillings in their mouth?
The American Dental Association maintains the amount of mercury released from amalgam fillings is too small to have any documented adverse effects on human health. However, in 2005 World Health Organization released the following statement: “Adverse health effects from mercury exposure can be tremors, impaired vision and hearing, paralysis, insomnia, emotional instability, developmental deficits during fetal development, and attention deficit and development delays during childhood…Recent studies suggest that mercury may have no threshold below which some adverse effects do not occur.”
At White Sands Dentistry, we felt the need to consider both sides of the argument. After much research, we came across an organization called the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT). Their researchers found that once a person has mercury fillings in their mouth, they are subject to measurable mercury vapors every time they eat, brush their teeth and receive a professional dental cleaning. The amount of mercury released grows exponentially when receiving dental restorative procedures that require placement or removal of this mercury amalgam.
Moreover, further studies demonstrated that mercury is a possible cause or exacerbating factor in conditions such as allergies, thyroiditis, chronic fatigue syndrome, reproductive disorders, psychological disorders, Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis and Alzheimer’s disease. This is only a partial list, so we encourage readers to visit IAOMT.org and look up the article “2016 Fact Sheet on Human Health Risks from Dental Amalgam Mercury Fillings.”
At White Sands Dentistry, we decided to take this scientific research seriously. We have been a mercury-free office, as we discontinued placement of mercury amalgam fillings many years ago. Recently, we decided to become a mercury-safe dental office as well, and we are proud to announce that we have completed certification by the S.M.A.R.T program developed by IAOMT. The acronym “SMART” stands for Safe Mercury Amalgam Removal Technique.
This removal technique dramatically reduces the amount of mercury exposure. This was a significant investment for our dental practice, and we are excited to become responsible stewards of the health of our patients, our staff and last, but not least, our environment. Please feel free to contact our office and schedule a complimentary consultation if you are interested in safe removal of your dental mercury filling.
At White Sands Dentistry we combine traditional yet conservative dental treatment with holistic principles while emphasizing prevention and healthy nutrition. We provide nutritional counseling and a review of non-toxic dental products and home-care strategies. We practice mercury-safe, mercury-free and fluoride-free dentistry while striving to be affordable and accessible to entire families and patients of all ages. White Sands Dentistry is located at 520 48th St Ct E, Bradenton, (941) 748-9393.