When it comes to mercury, ignorance is deadly.
Mercury ignorance is deadly. Mercury is the second most poisonous, naturally occurring substance on the planet. (The first is plutonium.) Mercury vapor is emitted from volcanoes, coal-burning power stations, and incinerators, and returns to the earth through contaminated rain. It is methylated to methyl mercury in oceans and lakes and enters the food chain via fish and other seafood. Mercury fillings have been used as restorative method of choice for many years due to its low cost, ease of application, strength, durability, and bacteriostatic effects.
However, there are several concerns, such as detrimental health effects, aesthetics, and environmental pollution. Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Austria have banned the use of mercury fillings. Recent research shows that mercury fillings even release a very small amount of mercury vapor during chewing. Whether or not this amount is harmful to the body is a subject of ongoing controversy.
Amazingly, the dental profession uses more mercury per year than any other business. In fact it’s the only industry using elemental mercury that isn’t regulated by the government. Hopefully that will change soon, but in the meantime you can dramatically minimize your exposure by avoiding the placement of new mercury fillings, gradually replacing old mercury fillings with composite resin or porcelain, and limiting your intake of fish with high mercury levels. Incredible Smiles is proud to be a Mercury-Free dental practice.