Dentistry is one of the main ways mercury makes its way back into the environment, where it can ultimately affect those who have never had an amalgam filling in their mouth.
Yes, whether you have amalgams or not, mercury “silver” fillings are everyone’s problem.
This is why some countries – most notably Norway, Sweden and Denmark – have phased out dental amalgam already. “Mercury is among the most dangerous environmental toxins,” says Erik Solheim, Norway’s Minister of the Environment. “Satisfactory alternatives to mercury in products are available, and it is therefore fitting to introduce a ban.” The World Health Organization (WHO) similarly cites amalgam as a non-essential use of mercury and recommends “a phase down” and shift to alternatives.
And earlier this year, a global mercury treaty was finally passed, aiming to have “a worldwide ban on the manufacture, export and import of…products that contain mercury” in place by 2020. Although the standards for dentistry aren’t as rigorous as we’d like, that amalgam is addressed at all is a key accomplishment.
Why are we still using amalgam fillings in the United States – especially when there are such excellent alternatives available? The latest composite resins – the material used to make white/tooth-colored fillings – are in some cases even stronger and more durable than amalgam. They also have the advantage of letting you save more natural tooth structure, keeping the tooth strong. Add proper testing to ensure biocompatibility – something we insist on in our office – and you’ve got a quality, nontoxic restoration that can last for many years. (We know people who have had composite fillings last for 20 years or even longer with proper care. This is comparable to amalgam.)
They’re certainly more aesthetic, as well.
If you are thinking about having your fillings removed, first find out if the amalgam fillings you have are making you ill. Some people’s bodies are able to handle the mercury exposure and can excrete it efficiently, as noted on the Dr. Oz segment and in the ITV documentary. If they are, you then want to be sure that the dentist you entrust to the job is mercury-safe. Special precautions must be taken to minimize exposure to both you and the dental team, as well as the environment. The IAOMT’s guidelines for removal are standard for mercury-safe dentists.
Finally, be aware that proper removal usually involves pre- and post-removal detox, especially if you have chronic health problems in which mercury has played a part. Your body must be prepared to heal and detoxify – and then supported in its detox processes afterward. Amalgam removal is not a quick fix and definitely not something that should be rushed into.
Learn all you can about the pros and cons. Work closely with a biological dentist and allied physicians and healers to determine if this is a good path to follow with respect to your specific health situation. Ask questions. Get the facts. Decide what makes most sense for you.