In recent years there have been ever increasing concerns about amalgam fillings. (also known as “silver” fillings.)
Numerous health researchers have cited the detrimental effects of these fillings, even entire documentaries made.
As someone with 9 amalgam fillings (!) I decided to investigate how these might be impacting my health and what, if any, action I should take.
First up, here’s what you need to know about amalgam fillings…
What are Amalgam Fillings?
Amalgam fillings have been used in dentistry for over 150 years as they have been deemed to be a “cheap, reliable and durable.”
Amalgams are comprised of 50% mercury, with the remaining 50% containing silver, tin copper and zinc.
How Toxic Are Amalgam Fillings?
It is scientifically proven that mercury is the most poisonous, non-radioactive, substance known to man. Mercury is more toxic than lead, cadmium, and even arsenic.
Mercury is a neurotoxin that crosses your blood-brain barrier and cellular membranes.
According to the literature, mercury is stored in fat cells, bones, glands, brain and can cause damage to the central nervous system, brain, spinal cord and nerves.
Chronic mercury exposure can cause psychological, neurological, and immunological problems.
Symptoms can include (but are not limited to)
- Emotional instability
- Brain fog / slowed mental response
- General weakness
- Cardiovascular problems
- Hormone disruption
- Mood changes including irritability, depression and nervousness
- Respiratory problems
- Weight Loss
Amalgam fillings are also associated with a higher incidence of breast cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, multiple sclerosis and dementia.
Dental amalgam is classified and shipped as a hazardous material to dental offices. This means that dentists are required to use precautionary measures when handling amalgam and there is a special safety protocol that dentists must adhere to for its disposal.
And yet, somehow this incredibly toxic substance supposedly becomes “inert” and harmless once it is implanted into our teeth? The irony is astounding!
In short, mercury does not belong in your body in any way, shape or form!
According to surveys, only one in four people is aware that silver amalgams contain mercury. Unfortunately the dental industry capitalises on this ignorance and dentists are persuaded to keep this information hidden. They are also protected by the FDA which has ruled that no warning shall be issued to patients. This includes pregnant women and young children who have the greatest risk from mercury toxicity.
As to why some people are affected by mercury exposure more than others? Some of us are better genetically adapted to detoxify heavy metals from our body which is why mercury exposure can have varying effects on the population.
Your level of toxicity also depends on your nutritional status. For example, we know that a diet rich in fruit and vegetables, as well as certain types of foods and superfoods, can offset some of the potentially detrimental effects of mercury exposure.
Another important point to note is that heavy metals such as mercury can block nutrient and mineral absorption – particularly zinc, calcium and selenium . So even if you have a healthy diet, your nutrient & mineral absorption may be compromised.
Why are Amalgam Fillings Still Used by the Majority of Dentists?
Given this information, WHY does the American Dental Association (ADA) continue to give their stamp of approval to amalgam fillings?
Having spoken with several holistic dentists, the consensus seems to be:
- To admit liability after all these years would result in an unimaginable number of lawsuits
- Amalgam fillings are highly profitable
Thankfully more and more dentists are questioning the absurdity of using amalgam fillings. (Mercury next to your brain anyone?) Those that don’t are either unaware of the research, or cannot conceive that their governing body would put profit before public health.
My TOXIC Teeth
Being the health conscious individual that I am, the first step I took was to find out whether mercury from my 35 year told fillings had been ‘leaking’ into my body.
Therefore I consulted with local natural health practitioner, Angela Frieswyk, and she recommended that I have a hair analysis done through Biotrust NZ, which I did.
The results of my test?
As you can see, my mercury levels were through the roof!
Therefore I asked the question…
Could my very high levels of mercury be due to other sources, such as vaccinations or mercury tainted seafood? (The former being one of the most common sources of mercury exposure. Mercury is listed on vaccination inserts as ‘thimerosol’ )
But the fact was, other than a TB vaccine at age 15, I haven’t received any other vaccinations, nor have I had any flu vaccines.
It then became evident to me where my exposure to mercury had come from…
As cited by the European Commission, “The largest source of mercury exposure for most people in developed countries is the inhalation of mercury vapour from amalgam fillings.”
I learned that a single amalgam filling releases an average of 15 micrograms of mercury per day. In other words, I was absorbing up to 135 micrograms of mercury per day! (For perspective, eating mercury tainted seafood will expose you to about 2.3 micrograms per day)
Finding a Holistic Dentist
If you decide to have your silver fillings removed, it is imperative that you have this done by a holistic or ‘biological’ dentist. If a conventional dentist drills out your amalgam fillings without any safety precautions in place, this can lead to serious health consequences.
A holistic dentist is someone who does not use amalgam fillings, but rather, safer, non toxic composites. In addition, they follow a very strict safety protocol when removing amalgams in order to protect themselves and their patients.
This includes the use of rubber dams, face shields, an alternate breathing source and other safety measures.
I also wanted to be sure that the materials being used by the holistic dentists were non toxic. Unfortunately a number of white composites still contain concerning levels of BPA and fluoride. Even though these are considered to be much less toxic than their amalgam counterparts, I decided that if I was going to have my amalgams removed, I was going to do it the right way.
(Anyone who knows me personally knows I never do things by halves!)
So I took the next step and met with two local holistic dentists. The first holistic dentist took some galvanic readings to determine which fillings were leaking the most amount of mercury. In my case, the most leakage was coming from the top left hand quadrant, followed by the left hand quadrant. (Holistic dentists prioritise removal of fillings based on how much mercury is being released from individual amalgams)
My biggest concern was that these holistic dentists were using the aforementioned safety protocols as well as non toxic replacement fillings.
To my surprise, neither of these holistic dentists met the above criteria (!)
Therefore I had to look elsewhere…
Don’t miss part 2…
- The holistic dentist I chose, and why
- The heavy metal chelation protocol I followed
- My top 6 recommendations for amalgam removal and my advice if you choose to keep your amalgam fillings