Dental Fillings Excrete Unsafe Levels of Mercury
A February 2011 journal article published in Science of the Total Environment has found that around 120 million people (approximately 1/3 U.S. population) with amalgam dental fillings exceed the California EPA "safe" doses of mercury level exposure. The study states that, according to 2001–2004 population statistics, there are about 181 million people in America (including children as young as two and adults as old as 90) who have a total of approximately 1.4 billion fillings in their mouths. Most of these are amalgam fillings. Since data was available on the weight and prevalence of tooth filling in Americans, the researchers could look at increases of mercury in the urine of those with filled teeth. They could then estimate the exposure to mercury that occurred due to fillings in five age groups. The results showed that dental amalgam does release mercury into the bodies of those who have these fillings. In fact, reports by the World Health Organization (WHO, 1991) and Health Canada (1996) confirm that dental amalgam is the largest source of mercury exposure for people who have these fillings. This exposure is not just a one-time occurrence either. It is continuous exposure that exceeds safe levels.
Researchers for this journal article were part of a panel put together by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to look at mercury exposure from amalgam fillings. Dr. Richardson, formerly of Health Canada, provided a risk assessment based on data that was available from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) and other previous research. That research ranged in date from 1996 to 2005. Earlier research estimated the mercury doses in urine, other bodily fluids and tissues of people with amalgam fillings. Later research looked at statistics of mercury in the urine of women aged 16 to 49 years old who also had amalgam fillings. While there is still much more research needed, the analysis of these studies does point toward dangerous levels of mercury in the blood, urine and tissues of much of the population with amalgam fillings. As mercury is a toxin to the body, the practice of using mercury fillings as a restorative dental material will lead to these toxins being present in the body. Exposing much of the general population to higher than safe levels of mercury through such practices is dangerous, and should be treated as such. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) calculates levels of mercury as dangerous at .3 micrograms per cubic meter. Erring on the more conservative side, the California EPA puts that dangerous level at .03 micrograms per cubic meter. This means that amalgam fillings are harming anywhere from 68 million to 120 million people in the general public through mercury toxicity.
Mercury and Disease
The fact that this many people are exposed to levels of mercury considered higher than safe levels puts emphasis on what health effects mercury amalgam fillings might be having on the current population. High doses of mercury in the body can cause many problems. There is no doubt that mercury is highly toxic. In fact, In the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) Priority List of Hazardous Substances, mercury is ranked third, just behind arsenic and lead, but ahead of plutonium and cyanide. Even the United States Centers for Disease Control register it as a harmful substance that can affect the nervous system.
Mercury has been linked to numerous diseases. Some of the most serious include Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Parkinson’s Disease, Alzheimer’s Disease, Crohn’s Disease and Lupus. They are diseases that have been found to have clear links to mercury exposure. These are not the only diseases correlated to mercury poisoning though. A host of other symptoms and conditions have been listed as referenced to mercury levels in the body. These range from neurological issues to gastrointestinal problems. Despite this, it is important to understand that there are numerous cases of people with
Mercury Exposure from Amalgam Fillings
Why do amalgam fillings produce higher levels of mercury in the body? To answer that, you should understand the current composition of these fillings. The composition of amalgam fillings consists of a mixture of metals. These are typically silver, zinc, copper, indium and palladium. The bulk of the fillings, though, is mercury. At estimates of 43% to 50.5%, mercury is the main component in amalgam fillings (Richardson et. al, 2011). In this regard, amalgam fillings play a significant role in exposure to mercury. This exposure increases due to chewing and brushing. It can and has been found in higher levels in saliva, breath, urine, feces, blood, organs, glands and tissues of those with amalgam fillings. In fact, a series of studies taking place in the 2000s demonstrated that the average content of mercury in the urine of those with amalgam fillings was greater than in those without. These studies also showed that as the number of amalgam fillings in the mouth increased, so too did the mercury content in urine. With all of this understood, the name amalgam does not fit. The fillings are mercury fillings.
What Should You Do If You Have Mercury Fillings?
The problem of dealing with mercury fillings is a touchy subject, so please bear with me on the explanation. Mercury is highly poisonous. The metal slowly builds up in our bodies over time, so the effect is cumulative. Some people have electrical charge issues with the mercury fillings. The fillings ramp up their nervous system. So when the fillings are safely removed it is as if a cloud has been lifted. Other people don’t suffer any noticeable effects from mercury fillings. I have had many, many people contact me who have had their mercury fillings removed and who have experienced significant tooth pain afterwards, whereas before their mercury-filled teeth did not cause them pain. The pain could be caused by deep drilling in the filled tooth, from the tooth or nervous system of the individual already being sensitive, or because the new filling material or bonding agent was not compatible with the person’s system. From a narrow list of supposedly safe filling materials, only one filling material tested safe for me to use when I replaced my mercury fillings; it was called Diamon Crown Resin. If you replace mercury with a composite that isn’t compatible with your body, you could be exchanging one set of problems for another. For these reasons, I don’t want to advocate rushing out and getting mercury fillings removed. At the same time, a carefully planned removal, where your body is prepared for the procedure and all the safety protocols are used, is a good idea for almost everyone because mercury fillings are highly toxic.
If you do not already have mercury fillings, then of course, don’t get any new ones. You may find some
Mercury is a dangerous and toxic substance. Exposure to mercury can create serious health issues over time. Because mercury fillings are permissible to use, their toxicity is ignored. The American Dental Association and many state and federal agencies have chosen to ignore the serious health threat of mercury fillings. This new research shows without a doubt that 120 million people are being poisoned by what is in their mouths. Mercury fillings are probably the largest public health menace of our time. Levels of mercury from amalgam fillings can play a significant role in health or causing disease. Doctors should be aware of this when examining patients’ health histories and amalgam filling removal should be considered seriously and carefully.
Richardson, G. M., Wilson, R., Allard, D., Purtill, C., Douma, S., & Graviere, J. (2011, Feb. 13). Amalgam risk assessment finds 120 million Americans over daily safe dose of mercury from amalgam fillings. Science of Total Environment, 409 (2011), 4257-4268. Accessed at http://www.mercuryexposure.info/science/risk-assessment/item/452-amalgam-risk-assessment