For thousands of years dentist have been using a dental procedure called: dental amalgam. A dental amalgam is an alloy of mercury with other metals that dentists uses to restore a smile. This dental treatment is used to fill cavities caused by tooth decay, the treatment was first documented during the Tang Dynasty in China (618-907 A.D.); in addition the use of a dental amalgam was register in Germany by Dr. Strockerus in about 1528. However, in recent years studies have proven that some materials used in these dental amalgams are dangerous and poisonous to our health; because of these studies, some dentist agree that a dental amalgams that contains Mercury is harmful to our health and have decided to offer patients other filling options.
To help patients whom have been previously treated with mercury amalgams, many dental clinics including Sani Dental Group, now offer a detoxification process, through this detoxification process mercury amalgams are remove and change with mercury-free materials.
What is a Dental Amalgam?
Dental cavities or tooth decay is an oral disease that causes damage to the tooth structure; this can be caused either by an infection or genetics. An infection can occurred when bits of food are left on our teeth, dental plaque can be form. Dental plaque will then produce an acid and over time, this acid eat away the surface of the tooth, causing caries.
Carries or cavities can be described as: holes in our teeth. To fill these holes, the dentist will make a mixture of metals to close the carries (holes). A dental amalgams consisting of liquid mercury and a powdered alloy composed of silver, tin and copper.
This combination recently brought concerned, a dental amalgam is composed of +/- 50% mercury; through recent investigations scientist now know the harmful effects mercury can cause to our health.
Mercury and Dental Work
The reason why mercury is used in dental work is because this metal helps bind the different alloy particles. Mercury will make a strong, durable, and solid filling; because of mercury unique properties, dentists have use this metal to make dental amalgams for years.
Early in dentistry field, dentist discovered that the components in mercury, will make a strong and durable dental amalgam. However, what they did not know was the harmful effects mercury can cause.
Mercury is a heavy metal, silver in color and very harmful, poisonous even to both our body and environment. This element is the most toxic, non-radioactive element on earth. Mercury poisoning can result from 3 forms, direct exposure in its water-soluble forms, inhalation of mercury vapor or eating seafood contaminated with mercury.
The Health Risks
As mention mercury is toxic and can cause serious health risks, because of its high toxicity levels many countries have ban on the use of mercury in all products. During the 20th century, mercury was used in many products, for example:
- Dental amalgams
- Fluorescent lamps
- Mercury relays
- Mercury switches
- Toilet ball-tap (float valves)
Let’s keep in mind that it wasn’t until recent years that medical and scientific researchers discovered the harmful effects mercury can and will cause to our health. Among the potential harmful effects is the use dental fillings that have mercury. Because of its poisonous nature, mercury poisoning can harm the cardiac, digestive, immune, urinary and respiratory systems. Also in recent laboratory test, researchers wanted to see the harmful effects mercury can caused to the brain, the researchers discovered a link between mercury poisoning and Alzheimer's disease.
Dental Mercury Detoxification
In today’s continues evolving medical fields, dentist are now using bio-compatible dental materials that contain no mercury. Dentists are now aware of the harmful effects mercury causes and for this reason they are now using high noble metals; such as: gold or solid porcelain.
Dentists and researchers discovered that Dental Amalgam, containing mercury can release harmful vapors. These vapors can travel through our bloodstream and produce neurotoxic and/or neuropsychological effects.
Today patients have more filling options and dental mercury detoxification is now possible. We invite you to get reference and speak to patients who have previously remove their mercury amalgams. If you qualify for this procedure, examine the room where the dental work will be performed, make sure that there is adequate ventilation.
When mercury amalgams are removed, toxic gasses and vapors will be release, if the room has poor ventilation both patient and dental personal at risk. In addition to good ventilation, the detoxification room should include ion generators that help to remove mercury from the air. When this procedure is being done, ask the dentist to use a rubber dam, this rubber dam is used to protect you from ingesting mercury-containing substances.
Here at Sani Dental Group, we care about your oral health and we want your teeth to be clean and free of poisonous materials. Contact our patient’s coordinator and see the many options our dental clinic in Los Algodones has to offer.
The steps and procedures mentioned in this post are procedures available in the medical field; however, not all these treatments and procedures are perform at Sani Dental Group. To confirm if this procedure is perform at our dental clinics, please contact us directly.
Disclaimer: Open dentist to help you with your dental needs. We are taking additional special measures following CDC recommendations to ensure your health and safety.