Amalgam was a popular alloy used for dental fillings. It consists of mercury and silver as well as low amounts of tin and copper. Since the 1800s, amalgam has been a popular choice for dental filling. However, modern researches said that amalgam made from mercury is dangerous to the health.
Mercury is a toxic heavy metal. By using mercury amalgam, a person is exposed to this dangerous metal directly from the mouth. According to Dr. Paul Gilbert of the Academy of General Dentistry, mercury is only second to plutonium when it comes to toxicity that’s why it’s important for those with mercury amalgams to remove it to prevent mercury poisoning.
A study conducted by the World Health Organization indicates that virtually 53% of total mercury emission generated into the planet was from amalgam and laboratory devices.
The US Environmental Protection agency recommends dentists who use amalgam separators to always catch and hold excess amalgam waste and not dump mercury into the sewer system.
Hidden Dangers of Mercury Amalgam Fillings
One of the most common effects of mercury amalgams is oral galvanism. This condition occurs when the dental fillings act like batteries when exposed to moisture from saliva. The fillings will literally produce an electric current, causing allergy-like symptoms in the mouth. When metallic objects, like utensils, are put in the mouth, the person will feel a jolt. Symptoms of mercury poisoning also include gingivitis, periodontal disease, tooth loss, abscesses, and bleeding.
But the hidden dangers of mercury amalgams do not stop at symptoms in the mouth. Mercury poisoning may also cause neurological diseases. Each time you bite down on a filling, it will leak mercury vapors into the body. This liquid will make its way into the stomach and be absorbed into the bloodstream. Eventually, it will lead to joint and muscle pain. A person suffering from mercury poisoning will also experience tingling sensation, numbness, paralysis of the limbs, and learning disabilities like hyperactivity, memory problems, cognitive difficulties, and attention disorders.
Mercury poisoning may also cause a number of reproductive problems such as irregular menstruation, excess flow or less of flow of menstruation, difficult menopause, and hot flashes. It may also heighten all PMS symptoms like extreme moodiness, irrational thoughts, unexplained anger or irritability, and in severe cases, infertility. Effects of mercury amalgams may also lead to severe mental problems like bi-polar episodes, depression, schizophrenia, and various states of insanity.
Gradual exposure to mercury through dental fillings could also cause disrupted flow of enzymes and hormones, thus, affecting a person’s metabolic rate. It could lead to a wide variety of conditions including hair loss, loss of libido, erratic weight gain, and weight loss, as well as digestive problems like ulcerative colitis, acid reflux, and auto-immune attacks on the body.
More than its hidden risks, mercury amalgam fillings are one of the major causes of pollution on the planet. It poisons the water and mining increases air pollution. Processing the metal itself generates pollution. All these explain why most dental associations are encouraging dentists to look for other alternatives to mercury amalgam fillings.