Amalgam, the common silver substance used to fill cavities, has been used in dentistry for more than 100 years. It is a combination of metals like silver, mercury, tin and copper and has traces of zinc, indium or palladium. Generally amalgams contain 50% mercury 35% silver and 9% tin and 6% of copper and traces of zinc and other metals. As alternatives there can be amalgams made with larger percentages of other metals like copper or indium which can bind mercury strongly and can decrease its release from this mixture.
Mercury is used in amalgam because it helps make the material more pliable. It creates a compound that is soft enough to pack into the teeth but quickly hardens to withstand the actions of biting and chewing.
Being cheaper compared to other fillings and due to its capability to with stand pressure caused due to chewing it has long been the preferred choice of material to use as dental fillings. Millions of people currently have amalgam fillings and some dentists are still using it today. However he harmful effects that mercury has on human health has been well documented for centuries.
The fact that mercury can have a accumulative harmful effect on human health has to be taken into consideration carefully. According to one source, mercury can attach through the sulfhydral groups on amino acids in your CNS (Central nervous system) unless actively removed for as long as 15-30 years. In other words, the longer you are exposed to the mercury the greater your risk of creating toxicity in your body.
We are exposed every day to mercury through various sources like water, air, occupation but using amalgam filling exposes you to mercury every day on a consistent basis. Although the risk of exposure to mercury through use of amalgam fillings is a controversial issue but it cannot be ignored that chewing, brushing and intake of hot foods can stimulate the release of mercury therefore exposing oneself to its possible toxicity.
Supporters of amalgam fillings claim that the amount of mercury released from amalgam fillings is negligable. However animal studies have conclusively shown labelled mercury traces appearing in kidneys, brain and intestinal walls. These mercury traces occurred from the amalgam. Some European countries have banned the use of amalgams as dental fillings.
Additionally there are reports showing a link between amalgam fillings with autoimmune disorders like Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis and thyroid problems along with other problems such as food allergies, kidney dysfunction, infertility, polycystic ovary syndrome and neurotransmitter imbalances causing tremors, insomnia, polyneuropath and paresthesias.
Why risk your health with mercury fillings? Today you have a choice with composite fillings. Composite is usually make of a quartz resin and most often has a light sensitive agent in it.
Composite fillings actually bond to the tooth thus helping the tooth be restored its original strength. Mercury fillings actually weaken the teeth making them more susceptible to breaking. Composite fillings restore the natural appearance of your teeth thus making it more aesthetically pleasing. And composite fillings are less sensitive to hot and cold that teeth filled with mercury.
The choice is simple. For health and cosmetic reasons have your teeth restored with mercury-free fillings. Arizona Dental Medicine is a mercury-free practice! Call Dr. Riley today and let her help you get on the path of improved health. 520-297-9069