Mercury-Free Dentistry Week

To acknowledge this Mercury-free dentistry week, Joseph Mercola MD just published an interview with Charlie Brown, the president of Consumers for Dental Choice and former Attorney General of West Virginia.

For reasons unclear to me, the tone of the question “Is mercury safe when placed in the mouth?” has taken on an almost religious fervor, with passionate arguments on both sides.

The American Dental Association declares that mercury amalgams are safe and non-toxic.[i] Several other organizations declare that mercury amalgams are toxic and should be banned. The International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology declares “ADA lies through their teeth about mercury fillings.”[ii] The International Academy of Biological Dentistry & Medicine (IABDM) declares that what happens in the mouth is reflected in the body, and espouses fluoride-free mercury-free dental restoration.

A dentist in my office building complex made this statement to me in about 2004 – only 12 years ago.

I will be happy to remove your fillings and replace them with white fillings if you think they are ugly. I will not do it if you think they may be dangerous to your health. The American Dental Association disagrees, and the Arizona Board of Dentistry will see that as a reason to discipline my license.

Most dentists now place composite fillings (white) rather than amalgams (“silver” which are 50% mercury) although the ADA still does not acknowledge that mercury is not safe to use in dentistry. “Dental amalgam has been studied and reviewed extensively. Amalgam restorations have not been found to be associated with adverse health effects.”[iii]

There are, of course, arguments on both sides of the fence. Mercury amalgam is very strong, very shiny (when it is first placed in your tooth), and certainly not immediately toxic.

Nevertheless, there is evidence that dentists and their assistants accumulate mercury in their tissues, proportionately to the length of time they have been working in the dental field.

One study showed significant evidence of increased blood mercury levels in dental professionals in the dental field, the concentrations increasing with their experience and length of time in the field.[iv]

Another study acknowledges the increased levels of mercury, but denies their practical or clinical significance.[v]

We finally removed mercury compounds from children’s vaccinations in the year 1999, on the grounds that any exposure to mercury was too much for the developing nervous systems of the human infant. Then we replaced the mercury preservative with aluminum adjuvant, which may be almost as toxic, but that’s another story.

We continue to place amalgam fillings in the teeth of the poor, the uninsured and the ill-informed, on the grounds that it is an excellent material, easy to work with, long lasting and inexpensive – all of which are true.

Whether it is a healthy choice will have to be up to you. Read the literature, consider the options, and make up your own minds.

Martha M Grout, MD, MD(H) is the Medical Director of the Arizona Center for Advanced Medicine, and the President of the Arizona Homeopathic and Integrative Medical Association (AHIMA). Her office of Integrative and Homeopathic Medicine is in Scottsdale, AZ. She treats patients with Lyme disease and other chronic illness, using techniques as diverse as intravenous nutritional therapy, supplementation, and autologous stem cell therapy for best possible restoration of the body to its healthy template. She works with biological dentists to help her patients eliminate toxic amalgam and chronic dental infection from their mouths.

[ii] https://iaomt.org/ada-lies-teeth-mercury-fillings/

[iv] Chaari N, Kerkeni A, Saadeddine S, Neffati F, Khalfallah T, Akrout M. Use of Mercury in Dental Silver Amalgam: An Occupational and Environmental Assessment . Rev Stomatol Chir Maxillofac. 2009 Jun; 110(3):139-44. Epub 2009 May 5.

[v] Monika Rathore, Archana Singh, and Vandana A. Pant. The Dental Amalgam Toxicity Fear: A Myth or Actuality. Toxicol Int. 2012 May-Aug; 19(2): 81–88. doi: 10.4103/0971-6580.97191

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