Mercury Safe Dentistry

Silver Fillings Background
Silver fillings, also known as dental amalgam fillings, are composed of mercury, silver, copper, tin, and sometimes zinc. All silver fillings contain approximately 45-55% mercury. Liquid mercury is used as a bonding component that fastens all the other alloy particles together into a durable filling. This composite material has been used for more than 150 years in order to fill cavities created by tooth decay. This practice is still commonly used in traditional dentistry throughout the United States among other countries around the world.

Are Silver Fillings Safe?
Mercury is a toxic poison that poses major health threats and environmental concerns. Scientific research has shown for years that the mercury component in silver fillings consistently leaks out low vapor levels which is mostly retained in the body. The amount of vapors actually intensifies whenever you chew, grind your teeth, or drink something warm. Mercury is also released during the filling process, replacement work, and removal of silver fillings. The FDA recognizes the benefits of silver fillings as durability and affordability, being the least expensive filling material, and claims limited to no health risks.

However, the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology’s research and studies have concluded that the use of mercury in silver fillings poses serious risks to human health along with lasting damage to wildlife and our environment. There has been much controversy regarding evidential studies if silver fillings are a safe practice or not.

Even though American dental schools and the American Dental Association continues to claim no health or environmental risks, many other institutions have argued the contrary. The United Nations Environment Program has begun a global effort to reduce mercury usage, including in silver fillings, which some countries have already joined and banned dental mercury.

Effects of Mercury in Silver Fillings
Research completed by the Internal Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology concludes over 250 specific symptoms related to mercury in silver fillings. Symptoms can range from cognitive memory loss to insomnia and cardiovascular problems. These wide range of symptoms affect every organ in your body due to potential mercury accumulation. An estimated 80% of mercury vapor from silver fillings is absorbed into your lungs and lingers to the rest of your body– especially the brain, kidney liver, and gastrointestinal tract. Individual responses vary from person to person, and effects may be insidious due to the fact that it can take many years for mercury poisoning symptoms to actually manifest.

The United States experiences approximately 28 tons of mercury pollution a year caused directly from dental amalgam. Mercury pollution affects the environment in a multitude of ways:

  • The wastewater from traditional dentistries is filled with mercury pollutants that contaminate our soil and water.
  • Patients with silver fillings excrete over ten times more mercury than patients without, contributing over eight tons of mercury into our water a year.
    The cremation and burial of patients with silver fillings contributes mercury directly into the air and soil.
  • High levels of mercury vapor have been found inside and outside of traditional dentistries.

Mercury Safe Dentistry
Dr. Robin Steely has devoted his life and Battle Creek dental practice to putting patients first. He has decided to no longer utilize dental amalgam along with incorporating a Mercury Safe removal protocol. We offer mercury free, BPA free composite resin fillings to ensure patient health. Due to the high amount of mercury vapor discharge whenever silver fillings are removed, Dr. Robin Steely abides by the Mercury Safe removal protocol to ensure safety for his patients, staff, and himself.

SMART certification
IAOMT

IAOMT Certification and Training
Dr. Steely is SMART certified from the IAOMT, International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology. The SMART certification entails a successfully completed training course in regards to proper mercury removal and understanding the harmful, damaging effects of mercury use in dentistry.

SMART– The Safe Mercury Amalgam Removal Technique
The SMART Mercury Safe removal protocol was created by IAOMT to ensure safety for patients and dental staff. Improper removal of silver fillings can result in extreme mercury toxicity vapors that are over one hundred times stronger than than the maximum levels of mercury vapor allowed by all government regulatory agencies.

We fully utilize the comprehensive SMART method, which includes:

  • Proper installation of an amalgam separator in order to fully collect mercury waste
  • Ensuring the procedure takes place in a high-volume air filtrated room that’s capable of removing all mercury vapors and filling particles
  • Proper protective gowns and covers for everyone involved in the procedure
  • Our staff utilize non-latex nitrile gloves, proper face shields, hair coverings, as well as properly sealed, respiratory grade masks designed specifically to capture mercury vapors
  • Our patients are protected in an impermeable barrier that protects both skin and clothing
  • External air source is delivered via nasal mask for our patients to ensure they don’t inhale any mercury vapors
  • Dental dams and saliva ejectors are placed in the patient’s mouth to further reduce mercury exposure
  • We utilize a special, high speed mercury vacuum as well as copious amounts of water to reduce head

Schedule a Consultation Today
If you’re worried about having silver fillings and the potential effects of toxic mercury poisoning, call us today to learn more or schedule a consultation on how we can properly remove your fillings.