The mercury in dental amalgams is currently a controversial subject.  Graduating from Dental School in 1985, we used them on everybody, in every area of the mouth.  I thought nothing of it and even remember a highly respected dental researcher and teacher of continuing education talking about how he let his children play with loose liquid mercury when they were at his office.  Even then, that sounded like a bad idea!  However, current research and my current training in Anti-Aging Medicine/Functional Medicine is changing my mind.  Silver amalgams release measurably harmful mercury vapor that can pass through cell membranes and cross the blood-brain barrier and cause immunological, neurological, and psychological problems.

We all agree that mercury-tainted seafood is dangerous for health and wellbeing.  Mercury in any form is dangerous – the “mad hatters” taught us that!  Since the average American has at least five dental amalgams, these silver fillings are a primary source of mercury exposure for people with them.  A low-copper dental amalgam is approximately 50 percent liquid mercury, 20-32 percent silver, 14 percent tin, and 8 percent copper, with a few other powdered trace minerals to include nickel.  Mercury vapors are released when chewing or drinking hot beverages and a single dental amalgam can release as much as 15 micrograms of mercury each day.  

Amalgam has been used for over 150 years.  It’s not expensive and not technique sensitive – it’s quite easy to place.  Most dental schools and even the American Dental Association still teach and condone it.  It is durable and “sets” even in a wet environment.  I’ve used lots and lots of it and often miss its positive properties.  But, metals naturally corrode; when amalgam corrodes, it expands.  This expansion puts pressure on the surrounding tooth structure and can eventually cause it to fracture.  They get their strength from being wedged into the tooth structure.  Any experienced dentist has dealt with this frustrating negative.  The argument that “it’s been used for over 150 years” always makes me laugh.  Why is that necessarily a good thing?  Remember, back in the 1940’s and early 1950’s the American Medical Association condoned cigarette smoking!  The “More Doctors” campaign convinced a lot of people that it was safe and even beneficial.  They were wrong.

The argument in favor of dental mercury amalgams states that there are no reliable long-term, double-blind studies.  Unfortunately, there never will be.  That kind of study is virtually impossible, in my opinion.  But, the body burden of amalgam can be measured, and I have had this done on myself.  A “provoked” urine test showed that my level of mercury was extremely high, while other metals were normal.  This is when my opinion started changing and I began chelation therapy to rid my body of extra metals.     

The purpose of this blog post is to make you aware of the potential toxicity of mercury fillings.  For example, mercury can bind to key receptor sites in the body for GABA, the calming brain neurotransmitter.  Every person has a differing capacity to clear toxins like mercury from their body and this is the key point.  I believe that mercury is a toxic material and that silver amalgams release harmful mercury vapor.  This vapor affects different people in different ways.  I’ll be writing on December 28 about mercury amalgam alternatives because there is still no “perfect” material.  START SOMEWHERE today learning more about how our exterior environment affects our internal environment.  LIVE YOUNGER by making simple changes. You can do it. I will help you!   

Silver amalgams release harmful mercury vapor

Silver amalgams release harmful mercury vapor