Mercury bioaccumulation can be detrimental to our health especially for those who have impaired detoxification process. (See previous post: Mercury exposure and toxicity signs and symptoms) One of the common sources of mercury is dental fillings referred to as silver amalgam, which can contain up to approximately 50% mercury. The mercury released as mercury vapour from the amalgam can accumulate in our tissues and organs over time. This toxic burden in our body can be one of the silent factor contributing to chronic dis-eases in our society.
Potential signs and symptoms of mercury overload:
- Brain fog or poor concentration
- Frequent headaches
- Lack of balance/Ataxia
- Sleep disturbance
- Autoimmune disease e.g. Hashimoto’s, Rheumatoid Arthritis, etc
- Multiple chemical sensitivity
- Numbness, tingling, weakness and/or pain through a nerve distribution
- Hearing loss
- Slurred or slow speech
- Muscle tremor
- Movement disorders
- Hair loss
- Hormonal dysregulation including abnormal menstrual cycles and infertility
- Cardiovascular disease including hypertension, coronary heart disease, transient ischemia attacks or stroke, or other vascular diseases
- Kidney dysfunction including proteinuria
If you have silver amalgam(s) and are identifying with some of the signs and symptoms of mercury overload, you may be already thinking of contacting your dentist to arrange for amalgam removal by now. However, be patience and read on because further considerations are required as to how the amalgam can be safely removed. In order to minimise the riskof high level of mercury being dumped into your system during the removal procedure, the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology has set up the Safe Mercury Amalgam Removal Technique (SMART) guidelines. It is a details step-by-step guidelines supported by researches to ensure the safety during the removal procedure. Visit https://iaomt.org/safe-removal-amalgam-fillings/ for the full run-down of the procedure.
A brief outline of SMART:
- An amalgam separator should be used.
- Each room where mercury fillings are removed should have adequate filtration in place.
- If possible, windows should be opened to reduce the mercury concentration in the air.
- The patient should be given a slurry of charcoal, chlorella, or similar adsorbent to rinse and swallow before the procedure.
- Protective gowns and covers for the dentist, dental personnel, and the patient should be in place.
- Non-latex nitrile gloves should be utilized by the dentist and all dental personnel in the room.
- Face shields and hair/head coverings are to be utilized by the dentist and all dental personnel in the room.
- Either a properly-sealed, respiratory grade mask rated to capture mercury or a positive pressure, properly-sealed mask providing air or oxygen should be worn by the dentist and all dental personnel in the room.
- A full body, impermeable barrier, as well as a full head/face/neck barrier under/around the dam, should be utilized.130,131
- External air or oxygen delivered via a nasal mask for the patient also should be utilized to assure the patient does not inhale any mercury vapor or amalgam particulate during the procedure.
- A dental dam that is made with non-latex nitrile material should be placed and properly sealed in the patient’s mouth.
- A saliva ejector should be placed under the dental dam to reduce mercury exposure to the patient.
- During amalgam filling removal, the dentist should utilize an IQAir Dental Hg FlexVac or similar device in close proximity to the operating field (i.e., two to four inches from the patient’s mouth) to mitigate mercury exposure.
- High speed evacuation produces better capture when fitted with a Clean Up device, which is preferred.
- Copious amounts of water to reduce heat and a conventional high speed evacuation device to capture mercury discharges1should be used to reduce ambient mercury levels.
- The amalgam should be sectioned into chunks and removed in as large of pieces as possible,using a small diameter carbide drill.
- Once the removal process is complete, the patient’s mouth should be thoroughly flushed with water170,171and then rinsed out with a slurry of charcoal, chlorella or similar
adsorbent.*IAOMT does not recommend amalgam filling removal for women who are pregnant or breast-feeding. Once you are informed, then you can present and discuss these guidelines with your trusted dentist.
Removing silver amalgam can be a risky and costly procedure, so please discuss your concerns with your health practitioner. It is essential to look at the big picture of your health history and work with a practitioner who can guide you through the different body system imbalances. In addition to presenting signs and symptoms, it is extremely useful to perform both pre-chelation and post-chelation heavy metal urinary test to determine whether or not mercury overload is a contributing factor to your health challenge.
I wish you health and hope that this is a useful piece of information.