- By Dr. Mercola - Dental amalgam, a.k.a "silver fillings" contain anywhere from 49 to 54 percent mercury
- Toxic mercury vapors from "silver fillings" are released into your oral cavity every time you chew or drink hot liquids
- A single dental amalgam filling releases up to 15 micrograms of mercury per day—over six times the amount you'd get from eating mercury-contaminated seafood—and is the primary source of mercury exposure in consumers
- Mercury is a neurotoxin that readily crosses your blood-brain barrier, cellular membranes, and your central nervous system
- Mercury is known to cause psychological, neurological and immunological health problems
Dental amalgams are the primary source of mercury exposure in Americans. A single dental amalgam filling releases as much as 15 micrograms of mercury per day. The average individual has eight amalgam fillings and could absorb up to 120 micrograms of mercury per day. For comparison, eating mercury-tainted seafood will expose you to about 2.3 micrograms per day -- and that is enough for scientists to call for a worldwide warning!
Unfortunately, while many have become well aware of the dangers of environmental mercury contamination, few are as well-informed when it comes to the dangers posed by dental amalgams.
Sadly, only one in four people is aware that silver amalgams contain mercury, and the dental industry is capitalizing on that ignorance. Part of the problem is that the very name "silver fillings" seems to imply they are made of silver, a misdirection that has kept a good majority of consumers in the dark for a long time. Alas, amalgams consist of more than 50 percent mercury. When confronted about this, the industry response is that the term "silver" is meant to denote the color, not the constitution…
However, dentists have also been actively persuaded to keep this information under tight wraps, and they are under no obligation whatsoever to inform their patients about the mercury content of amalgam fillings. As recently as 2009, the FDA ruled that no warning shall be issued to patients—not even to young women and parents of young children—that the mercury from the amalgam fillings is a reproductive toxin and a neurotoxin, despite the fact that pregnant women and young children are at greatest risk from mercury toxicity. <LINK>
Many scientists believe Alzheimer's impairs communication and coordination between cells. You have 100 billion nerve cells, or neurons, in your brain, and these neurons make up an intricate communication/information network that requires a great deal of energy and waste removal. These processes require a large amount of fuel and oxygen. Mercury can seriously impair these important and complex neurological processes.
Science is now telling us that mercury may very well be a significant factor underlying much chronic disease, and one about which the majority of physicians are completely unaware. It doesn't take much mercury to cause significant stresses in your body.
Sadly, many people with mercury toxicity are sick for MANY years, often decades, and have consulted dozens of physicians who fail to identify the real cause of their illness and suffering. Often these people have a constellation of seemingly unrelated symptoms. They are given bottle after bottle of pills, which merely mask some of the symptoms (at best) and create new imbalances within their bodies,without ever addressing the underlying cause of the problem. Not surprisingly, they fail to get better.
Even if you have only one, you're getting years of daily "dosing" mercury vapor from that filling, which adds to the other sources of mercury and other toxic substances to which you are regularly exposed. Once your immune system takes any sort of a hit from an illness or stress or trauma, it may no longer be able to keep up with the assault of ongoing mercury exposure.
Mercury Vapor Sneaks its Way from Your Tooth to Your Brain
Mercury vapor is the form of mercury most easily absorbed by your body. Sadly, dentists are still taught in dental school that the mercury in amalgams is "bound" with the other metals and doesn't leak, which is why half of them still believe it's safe. Yet, you can MEASURE the mercury vapor coming off the tip of the root of an amalgam-filled tooth. The fact that mercury vapor can be measured at the tip of a tooth's root is absolute proof that these amalgam fillings can and DO leak.
Once released from an amalgam-filled tooth, mercury in the form of nonreactive mercury vapor goes from your mouth to your lungs, then to your brain via your bloodstream. A common enzyme in your body called catalase converts (oxidizes) mercury vapor into the "Hg2plus" form, which is VERY toxic, and traps it inside your cells. Once here, it is very difficult for your body to remove it.
Experts say the mercury from amalgam is highly absorbed and gets into all parts of your body, including your brain and bone marrow. Every time you chew, mercury vapor is being liberated from those fillings and absorbed, potentially causing your health to decline over time.
Why is this Toxic Product STILL on the American Market?
Amalgam fillings contain more mercury than any other product sold in America. And they are highly profitable to dentists, which makes them that much harder to remove from the marketplace. Dentists can install amalgam fillings much faster than the primary alternative, which is composite fillings. Wherever healthcare budgets are tight, people in need of fillings are given amalgams. Low-income people, people in third-world countries, and even our soldiers get mercury fillings – even the pregnant ones – because they "cost less" to install. But with all that is known about the dangers of amalgam, why hasn't it been removed from the market altogether?
What is the political pressure that stands in the way? This is a very good question, and one that has NOT been answered by the FDA, according to Charlie Brown, founder of Consumers for Dental Choice. Charlie Brown has been a champion in the battle to get mercury banned from dentistry. <LINK>
"Thus, no matter what you have heard from a pro-amalgam dentist, or from the American Dental Association (ADA), or anyone who says that the mercury used and continuously released from amalgam fillings is acceptable and not considered a serious health hazard — mercury can never, ever, ever be considered ‘safe’ nor ‘harmless’. To even suggest that mercury, in any amount, is safe, or harmless, is inaccurate, misleading, and hazardous to the health of those who believe what this organization and its supporting dentists are telling them."Woman with 'toxic dental fillings' discovers mercury poisoning is to blame' for crippling symptoms mistaken for MS <LINK>
The FDA concluded in 2009 that dental amalgam was a safe and effective restorative treatment and issued a final rule, which the Association supported, that reclassified dental mercury and amalgam components for regulatory purposes. The FDA has received petitions suggesting that "consumers should be better informed" about dental amalgam fillings, the agency spokeswoman said. <LINK>
"It turns out every new medical drug should contain a warning: “The FDA approved this medicine. Watch out. Perhaps the warning should be more extreme: “If you’re taking this drug, have an emergency medical crew on stand-by.” Jon Rappoport <LINK>