If it’s not one thing…it’s another. After all of the outcry about the autism and vaccine connection, we thought that replacing mercury as a preservative with thimerosal would make us safe. Now, it turns out there could be another potential hazard.
Several studies published in medical journals have linked amalgam fillings to increased levels of bodily mercury and we all know what that means! Mercury has been linked to a variety of serious health concerns.
Millions of Americans have cavity fillings made of amalgam, a blend of about 50 percent mercury, a neurotoxin, plus tin, silver and other metals. (Fillings called “silver” are actually amalgam.) Although they’ve been widely used for more than 150 years, some people say amalgam fillings can emit mercury, causing damage to the brain, kidneys or nervous system.
As often happens it took a group of concerned citizens to force the FDA to reconsider its position on amalgam fillings. A lawsuit brought by Moms against Mercury was recently settled and the FDA now has this statement on their website.
” … mercury in fillings “may have neurotoxic effects on the nervous systems of developing children and fetuses.” It also states that “Pregnant women and persons who may have a health condition that makes them more sensitive to mercury exposure, including individuals with existing high levels of mercury bioburden, should not avoid seeking dental care, but should discuss options with their health practitioner.”
Thanks for watching out for us, guys!
For Parents and parents to be there are several issues. First, should amalgam fillings be removed? It’s not an easy or very environmentally friendly process as mercury from the fillings can end up in the sewer system and in landfills. Many dentists do have a waste recycling program in place to prevent environmental damage, so ask yours about it. If you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, you might want to consider having old fillings removed.
If you or your children require new fillings consider getting tooth colored resin or porcelain ones.
Photo Credit: Shakespearesmonkey at Flickr Under Creative Commons License
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