Mercury Free / Mercury Safe
What is Mercury?
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Mercury is a chemical element with the symbol Hg and atomic number 80. It is commonly known as quicksilver and was formerly named hydrargyrum (from Greek “hydr-” water and “argyros” silver). A heavy, silvery d-block element, mercury is the only metal that is liquid at standard conditions for temperature and pressure; the only other element that is liquid under these conditions is bromine, though metals such as caesium, gallium, and rubidium melt just above room temperature. With a freezing point of −38.83 °C and boiling point of 356.73 °C, mercury has one of the narrowest ranges of its liquid state of any metal.
Mercury occurs in deposits throughout the world mostly as cinnabar (mercuric sulfide). The red pigment vermilion, a pure form of mercuric sulfide, is mostly obtained by reaction of mercury (produced by reduction from cinnabar) with sulfur. Cinnabar is highly toxic by ingestion or inhalation of the dust. Mercury poisoning can also result from exposure to water-soluble forms of mercury (such as mercuric chloride or methylmercury), inhalation of mercury vapor, or eating seafood contaminated with mercury.
Mercury is used in thermometers, barometers, manometers, sphygmomanometers, float valves, mercury switches, mercury relays, fluorescent lamps and other devices though concerns about the element’s toxicity have led to mercury thermometers and sphygmomanometers being largely phased out in clinical environments in favour of alcohol or galinstan-filled glass thermometers alternatively thermistor or infrared-based electronic instruments, mechanical pressure gauges and electronic strain gauge sensors have replaced mercury sphygmomanometers. It remains in use in scientific research applications and in amalgam material for dental restoration in some locales.
What is Amalgam?
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In dentistry, amalgam is an alloy of mercury with various metals used for dental fillings. It commonly consists of mercury (50%), silver (~22-32%), tin (~14%), copper (~8%), and other trace metals. In the 1800s, amalgam became the dental restorative material of choice due to its low cost, ease of application, strength, and durability.
Recently however, concern for aesthetics, environmental pollution, health, and the availability of improved, reliable, composite materials have all contributed. In particular, concerns about the toxicity of mercury have made its use increasingly controversial. Due to a plan to phase out the use of mercury, Sweden, Norway and Denmark deliberated in 2008 on a ban of mercury dental amalgam, substituting it with composite fillings. Dentists in Denmark are no longer allowed to use mercury in fillings since April 1, 2008. The Swedish amalgam ban is for both environmental and health issues, according to the Swedish authorities.
In 1833 the Crawcour brothers, two Frenchmen, brought amalgam to the United States, and in 1844 it was reported that fifty percent of all dental restorations placed in upstate New York consisted of amalgam. However, at that point the use of dental amalgam was declared to be malpractice, and the American Society of Dental Surgeons (ASDS), the only US dental association at the time, forced all of its members to sign a pledge to abstain from using the mercury fillings. This was the beginning of what is known as the first dental amalgam war.
The dispute ended in 1856 with the disbanding of the old association. The American Dental Association was founded in its place in 1859, which has since then strongly defended dental amalgam from allegations of being too risky from the health standpoint.
Dental amalgam has been found to be a frequent contributor to oral lichenoid lesions and is possibly a variable associated with an increased risk of other autoimmune conditions such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, thyroiditis and eczema.
In the FDA final regulation on dental amalgam in 2009, the FDA recommended the product labeling of dental amalgam. The suggested labeling included: a warning against the use of dental amalgam in patients with mercury allergy, a warning that dental professionals use appropriate ventilation when handling dental amalgam, and a statement discussion of scientific evidence on dental amalgam’s risks and benefits in order to make informed decisions amongst patient and professional dentists.
What do the “experts” say about Mercury fillings?
International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology (IAOMT) It is a fallacy that mercury is neutralized when it is combined with other components of silver dental amalgam.” Research has shown that mercury even in extremely small amounts has toxic effects, for example, low dose mercury exposure has been shown to produce neurological pathology, cytotoxicity to nerve tissue.
“We find it particularly disturbing that the ADA has made such a blanket statement without any scientific support.” IAOMT Click here to visit www.iaomt.org
Metal Free Crowns and Fillings:
New porcelains and resin filling materials can oftentimes be used to replace all the metals in the mouth that are used to fix or restore the teeth. By asking for an evaluation to have a “metal free” mouth, the possibility of “metal free” for you can be determined. We feel that mercury-free, bonded resins are a superior alternative to traditional, mercury-silver amalgam fillings. In addition, metal-free, all porcelain crowns and resin fillings are effective and attractive tooth colored restorations that can provide extra support to damaged teeth.
Resins filling materials are the main alternative for Mercury Fillings. Different resins are available for specific tooth filling situations. The composite Resin is almost like the tooth structure, and the Resin Ionomer is strong but more decay resistant and more moisture tolerant. Porcelain is primarily used for crowns or tooth repair which requires the full covering of the tooth or coverage that includes cusps and areas subject to heavy forces. Porcelain fillings are also available to our patients.
Why Mercury Free and Enhancement Dentistry?
We know mercury is toxic to the human body, yet, it is an element in amalgam restoration (mercury-silver filling). This is why Dr. Stevens office has been mercury-free for almost 30 years!
Many of our patients have experienced dramatic improvements in their health from having all to the mercury containing amalgam restoration replaced with non metal filling material. Although some patients have not experienced noticeable health changes improvements in their health from replacing the amalgam fillings evidence exists to suggest that an overriding benefit is derived from being free of mercury containing fillings in the mouth.
We felt so strongly about not having mercury in your mouth that we have replaced them with only resins and porcelain for the past 30 years. Today’s excellent new materials contain no mercury. We believe the new resins and porcelains are safer and they match the color of your teeth! As one of your health care providers, we strive to provide a service that will enhance not just our oral health, but your overall health.
Since it is a hazard to public safety, the state won’t allow a dental office to pour mercury of fillings containing mercury down the drain or throw it into the garbage…however, they will allow us to place it in your mouth! Now, should we wonder why several countries no longer allow dentist to use mercury-silver filling material. For reference see www.amalgam.org, www.toxicteeth.org
Top Ten Reasons to Support Mercury-Free Dentistry
|1.|| Amalgam pollutes our environment
Amalgam pollutes 1) water via dental clinic releases and human waste; 2) air via cremation, dental clinic emissions, sludge incineration, and respiration; and 3) land via landfills, burials, and fertilizer. Once in the environment, dental mercury converts to its even more toxic form: methylmercury and becomes a major source of mercury in the fish people eat. Dental mercury in the environment can cause brain damage and neurological problems, especially for children and the unborn babies, according to the United States Environmental Protection Agency.
|2.||Amalgam endangers our health
Amalgam emits mercury vapor even after it is implanted into the body. This mercury is bioaccumulative, and it crosses the placenta to accumulate in fetuses as well. Dental amalgam’s mercury is a known health risk, especially for children, fetuses, nursing infants, and people with impaired kidney function especially. Even the U.S. Food and Drug Administration concedes that the developing neurological systems of children and fetuses are more susceptible to “the neurotoxic effects of mercury vapor” – and that there is no evidence that amalgam is safe for these populations.
|3.||Amalgam damages teeth
Placing amalgam requires the removal of a significant amount of healthy tooth matter. This removal, in turn, weakens overall tooth structure which increases the need for future dental work. On top of that, amalgam fillings – which expand and contract over time – crack teeth and once again create the need for still more dental work.
|4.||Amalgam endangers dental workers
Due to mercury exposure from amalgam in the workplace, studies have shown that dental workers have elevated systemic mercury levels. Few of these dental workers – mostly women of child-bearing age – are given protective garb or air masks to minimize their exposure to mercury; many are not aware of the risks of occupational mercury exposure. As a result, dental workers have reported neurological problems, reproductive failures, and birth defects caused by amalgam in the workplace.
|5.||Amalgam is frequently implanted without informed consent
Most dentists do not inform consumers that amalgam contains mercury. As a result, over 76% of consumers do not know that amalgam is mainly mercury according to Zogby polls. But once they are informed, 77% of people do not want mercury fillings – and they were even willing to pay more to avoid this unnecessary source of mercury exposure.
|6.||Amalgam perpetuates social injustice
While middle class consumers opt for mercury-free filling materials, people in developing nations, low-income families, minorities, military personnel, prisoners, and people with disabilities are still subjected to amalgam. Racial minorities are more likely to receive amalgam; for example, dentists place almost 25% more mercury fillings in American Indian patients than in white patients. In his testimony before Congress, former Virginia state NAACP president Emmitt Carlton described this injustice as “choice for the rich, mercury for the poor.”
|7.||Amalgam costs taxpayers
Taxpayers foot the bill for the environmental clean-up of amalgam and the medical care associated with mercury-related health problems. Meanwhile, the dentists who dump their mercury into our environment and our bodies are not held financially responsible.
|8.||Amalgam is diverted to illegal gold mining
Amalgam is commonly shipped to developing countries labeled for dental use, but then it is diverted to illegal use in artisanal and small-scale gold mining. Not only are the miners exposed to the risks of mercury poisoning, but the dental mercury they use to extract gold is released into the environment.
|9.||Amalgam is interchangeable with mercury-free filling materials
Amalgam is interchangeable with numerous other filling materials – including resin composites, compomers, and glass ionomers – that have rendered amalgam completely unnecessary for any clinical situation. In fact, the mercury-free alternatives have made amalgam so non-essential that entire nations, such as the Scandinavian countries, have banned the use of amalgam. Developing nations have benefitted from modern mercury-free techniques, such as atraumatic restorative treatment (ART), that only cost half as much as amalgam and make dental care more accessible.
|10.||Amalgam drives up the price of mercury-free alternatives
The continued use of amalgam keeps the price of mercury-free filling materials high by decreasing demand for these alternatives. As use of mercury-free materials increases, their price is expected to decrease even further.
From by www.toxicteeth.org
Mercury poisoning has many faces
• Panic attacks
• Reduced ability to handle stress
• Chronic fatigue
• Intestinal disorders
• Low thyroid hormone levels
• Low neurotransmitter levels
• Low reproductive hormone
• Poor memory
• Impaired ability to focus/concentrate
• Feeling self conscious in social settings
• Feeling fearful for no logical reason
• Compulsive thinking or “racing of the mind”
• Headaches and/or bodily aches pains
• Burning and/or itchy skin
• Weight loss/loss of appetite
• Dizziness/vertigo/brain fog
• Bladder infections/irritation