Dental Mercury’s Toxic Journey Into The Environment

Dental Mercury’s Toxic Journey Into The Environment

Mercury is one of the most toxic elements and a persistent traveler through our environment. So who’s the travel agent for this? Elemental poison coal-fired power plants. Most definitely. Mining operations. Of course. Your neighborhood dental office. Surprisingly, yes. The United Nations Environment program reports that 10% of global mercury usage is for amalgam tooth fillings. This results in up to 340 tons of dental mercury journeying into the environment each year. In the United States, dentists are currently the second largest users of elemental mercury. This accounts for roughly 32 tons of mercury used yearly to place amalgam restorations, otherwise known as silver fillings. Although the number of amalgams placed has decreased over the last few decades, dentists still use amalgam without precautions. So the threat of mercury exposure continues.

Dental mercury travels many pathways on its journey back into the environment. It starts when a dentist receives pre capsulated dental amalgam. Each capsule up to 900 milligrams of elemental mercury is separated from the other alloys to make the final product. The capsule is vigorously shaken in a tri to thoroughly mix all the elements. Occupational safety concerns arise because this heats the mercury creating thousands of micrograms of mercury vapor, which are released upon opening the capsule. The used amalgam capsule still contains a small amount of mercury, so the a a recommends the capsules be stored in an airtight container and collected by a hazardous waste company. Unfortunately, the majority of dentists toss the capsules into the trash. This mercury contaminated trash will eventually travel to a landfill where the mercury will continue its trek down into the soil.

Back at the dental office, the freshly mixed amalgam is placed into the tooth. The dentist then carves away any excess material while patients swallow. Some amalgam waste most is suctioned out and flows through a filtration system, but this system only captures a small percent of the larger pieces. The vast majority of much smaller pieces escape into the wastewater. A similar scenario plays out when dentists replace amalgam fillings. Many dentists not realizing the environmental harm clean out their filtration systems by dumping the captured mercury, tainted sludge down the drain. A study funded by the A estimated that amalgam fillings contribute up to 50% of the mercury found in wastewater. This contaminated water then flows to publicly owned water treatment plants. While efforts are made to remove the mercury from wastewater, most of it settles down into the sewage sludge, which is then taken and spread on land as fertilizer or deposited in a landfill. In both scenarios, the mercury constantly off gases into the atmosphere and seeps into the ground. A percentage of the sewage sludge is also sent packing to incinerators.

With over 200 tons of dental mercury continually off-gassing mercury vapor in the mouths of Americans, even exhaling is a contributor of mercury to our atmosphere. Additionally, people with amalgam fillings service hosts from Mercury’s passage back into our environment through the excretion of human waste. Mercury’s ride continues even after death. Crematories, which are unregulated and contain no filtering processes are growing vehicle for transporting mercury back into the atmosphere when all the various pathways are accounted for. Dental mercury from the United States contributes roughly 28 and a half tons into the environment each year. The governments of the world are actively working together to reduce the amount of mercury released globally to protect human health. The first and most powerful step to eliminating Mercury release from dental amount is to discontinue the use of this toxic material with the threat. So great and the solutions so simple, it’s time to restrict Mercury’s passport.

Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas

Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas

In 1991, the World Health Organization acknowledged that the predominant source of human exposure to Mercury is from your fillings. That should be of concern to anyone. So all mercury silver fillings leak substantial amounts of mercury constantly. The amount increases with any kind of stimulation, and as a result, mercury from fillings produces the majority of human exposure to Mercury. The International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology, extremely concerned about the anecdotal claims of safety by manufacturers and dental trade associations there at variance with the published peer reviewed scientific evidence. To the contrary, the precautionary principle requires action. Once the possibility of harm exists, it does not require proof beyond a shadow of a doubt that in the case of heavy metal and antibiotic exposure is both nearly impossible and unnecessary. In our opinion, what you’re seeing is mercury vapor coming off a 25-year-old silver amalgam filling in an extracted tooth. The background is a phosphorescent screen. The mercury vapor absorbs the fluorescent light, and you can see it as a shadow on the screen. This is mercury coming off a filling that was dipped in water that’s the same temperature as the human body.

This is a filling that was rubbed with a pencil eraser for just a few seconds, like going to the hygienist and having her clean your teeth. These are not small amounts of mercury. If you can see it, it’s more than 1000 times higher than the Environmental Protection Agency will allow for the air that we breathe. What about the last time you went to the dentist and they drilled on your tooth? Here is the mercury vapor. Every time you raise the temperature to 110 degrees with hot coffee or warm water, or even chewed on it, mercury comes off fillings every time you stimulate them, and that simulation causes the mercury to continue to leak out of the fillings for an hour and a half. At a minimum, some people grind their teeth, some people chew gum. The dentist might send an old gold crown to the dental lab to be welded. How about the dental personnel? They’re not being given informed consent. Back in 1985, the International Academy Oral Medicine toxicology set out to determine the amount of mercury that was coming off fillings. And here’s the graph showing substantial quantities of mercury were measured coming off fillings, and then we estimated the total dose. Then we began animal experiments and put radioactive fillings in shape. Mercury accumulated in the jaw, stomach, liver, and kidney of the sheep. In just 30 days, substantial quantities of mercury spread from the fillings to every organ in that sheep’s body.

Then we measured that the sheep’s kidneys dropped in their ability by 60% to clear inulin and indication of kidney malfunction. Whole body imaging of monkeys found exactly the same thing. Proponents of amalgam felonies claim that sheep chew too much. But what’s the problem with monkeys? They had mercury in their jaw, kidneys, liver, intestine, and heart. And further research found dystrophic bacteria that were antibiotic resistant cropped up in the intestines within two weeks of receiving these mercury leaking fillings. Further studies have found damage to the A DP rib oscillation of brain neuron proteins in response to the controversy and at the request of the Federation of Experimental Scientists and biologists, Dr. Fritz Schneider and Murray Vimy wrote an editorial, the first ever in fab that point by point refuted the claims of the amalgam proponents that should be of concern to anyone wanting to have healthy children because mercury is highly damaging to fetuses.

Experiments in sheep showed that mercury from the sheep’s fillings transferred immediately to the placenta, to the unborn fetus, and to every conceivable portion of the fetus’s body. It even increased in the lamb higher after birth from mercury in the mother’s milk. There’s no such thing as a safe mercury filling. All mercury fillings leak, mercury, the combined effect of mercury, cadium, and lead. It’s just now being investigated, but it’s not one in one. It’s synergistic and 1 0 1 may make 100 or even a thousand. Why is that of concern? Over and over again, we’ve heard that children are exposed to lead from our environment. Mercury and lead is many times more toxic than just mercury alone. These black corroded pitted mercury fillings are used where you must drill away a third of the tooth in order to fix a pinhead sized cavity. Even if you love mercury, it’s the wrong thing to do to the children.

It leads to broken diseased root canal extracted teeth throughout the rest of the life. It’s a blunder that costs the child all through their life. Millions and millions of dollars are spent annually fixing teeth again and again, and dentists don’t follow the manufacturer’s recommendations. They pack mercury and children around gold crowns underneath bridges. They stuff it around the gum line. In contact with tissues, there’s mercury spreading from this gold crown to every tissue in that patient’s body. Even if you like mercury fillings, putting that kind of filling in the tooth is simply the wrong thing to do. Harold Lowe, the former director of the National Institute of Dental Research back in 1993 wrote the first filling is a critical step in the life of a tooth. Using amalgam for the first filling requires removing a lot of tooth substance, not only disease, tooth substance, but healthy tooth substance as well.

So in making the undercuts, you sacrifice a lot and this results in a weakened tooth. The next thing you know, the tooth breaks off and you need a crown. Then you need to repair the crown, and so it continues to the stage where there’s no more to repair and you pull the tooth with the first filling. You should do something that can either restore the tooth or retain more healthy tooth substance, use new materials, composites, or materials that can bond to the surface without undercuts. You can do this with little removal of the tooth substance so that the core of the tooth is still there.

I would add that the cost of all that dental repair over and over again makes the cost of mercury fillings enormous. Even if you don’t consider the neurological impairment and the brain damage that they surely cause in dental personnel and the infertility and the heartbreak that they’ve caused to so many families. It is the opinion of this academy that responsible government agencies should prohibit the use of these fillings until such time as their manufacturers produce the alleged evidence of safety. These instructions can be found on the webpage of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. I would recommend that you review them and have your dentist do the same before commencing any procedures involving mercury.

Safe Removal of Amalgam Fillings

Safe Removal of Amalgam Fillings

Recently, a 52-year-old physician in good health decided to have his mercury fillings replaced. He immediately became ill within two weeks and would’ve died had he not had a heart transplant. He had developed idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy. Research has linked this often fatal heart problem to mercury. IDCM HEART has 22,000 times more mercury in it than a heart that’s sick. For cardiovascular reasons you need to be protected when mercury fillings are removed. Everyone including the European Union, the American Dental Association, the amalgam manufacturers, and the International Academy of Oral Medicine and toxicology agree that removing old mercury silver fillings can be dangerous because it exposes everyone present to enormous amounts of mercury. Fortunately, there are steps that any responsible dentist can take, which will greatly reduce the risk and minimize everyone’s exposure to this toxic metal. First, the dentist needs to understand that once a removal procedure begins, the mercury filling will spew enormous quantities of invisible odorless poisonous gas.

This must be captured in a vacuum and removed from the vicinity of the dental personnel and the patient. Some poorly designed dental offices have vacuums that exhaust indoors like a closet or a utility room. This is wrong because the whole office then becomes contaminated as a result. The next important step is to protect the breathing zone. This can be done for the doctor and assistant with a Mine Safety Association mask with an additional small particle filter. An even better system is like the one used for hazmat disposal experts or firemen. This provides fresh air under posse pressure. This avoids the principle problem with masks alone, which is termed suck by where contaminated air is inhaled around the edge of the mask instead of through the filters. For the patient, it presents a slightly different problem. Positive pressure error is strongly recommended as well. A suitable substitute is a nasal hood similar to that used to administer nitrous oxide analgesia, but without the positive pressure, this reduces the exposure.

But a rapid inhalation can suck by the edge of a nasal hood. Therefore, posse pressure is considered safer. Gloves nitrile are preferred to latex because mercury does not appear to penetrate nitrile gloves as readily as it does latex. Personally, I prefer to use a rubber dam for many reasons, but some dentists and a few patients prefer packing the mouth with cotton. It’s not important because both those procedures are approved, but remember, it is do not breathe in through your mouth at all. Ever during any dental procedure, before commencement of the drilling, the patient holds a supplemental vacuum close to their chin, and the assistant should place her high volume vacuum within one half inch of the tooth. And that’s not the saliva ejector. It’s a big vacuum. It should remain glued to that side of the tooth until every scrap of mercury filling and the particles have been thoroughly removed and rinsed away.

In addition, since mercury easily penetrates latex a vacuum such as a saliva ejector should be placed underneath the rubber dam and the patient should be questioned not to breathe in through their mouth. A technique pioneered and taught by the International Academy of Oral Medicine toxicology called the cut and chunk technique, involves sectioning the old filling with a burr. In the diagram, you see the burr is placed into the filling and drawn across, cutting the filling into two pieces. That reduces the amount of drilling necessary to remove the filling. No diamonds please, as that creates small particles and is potentially even more dangerous than using a bur the dentist using a full water spray from his handpiece and a supplemental spray from the dental assistant with her water syringe carefully cuts the old filling in half and removes the two pieces. This minimizes the drilling necessary and the water cools the filling to reduce the mercury vapor. After the filling is out, the dam and cotton rolls should be removed and the mouth thoroughly flushed for about a minute. In order to remove all the particles, these instructions can be found on the webpage of the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. I would recommend that you review them and have your dentist do the same before commencing any procedures involving mercury.

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