For nearly 200 years, dentists have been placing amalgam fillings. Often called “silver” fillings, they’re more accurately called “mercury fillings.” After all, they contain much more mercury (53%) than silver (35%), along with tin, copper and zinc.
Mercury is a potent neurotoxin, second only to plutonium in terms of toxicity. As Dr. David Kennedy notes, with just four amalgams present, “the average person’s saliva is so high in mercury, they cannot legally spit into the toilet. Their saliva exceeds the EPA maximum legal municipal discharge standard for mercury.”
Despite mainstream dentistry’s wishful thinking, mercury does not become inert once placed in the teeth. The normal pressures of chewing and swallowing slowly erode the fillings. (Extra pressures from grinding, clenching or other chewing habits speed things up.) Mercury vapor is constantly released into the body’s circulatory system and biological terrain, and builds up in organs such as the liver and brain. The ADA now admits that outgassing happens but still insists that the vapor is nontoxic.
Illnesses that have been linked to dental amalgam include chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS), fibromyalgia, multiple sclerosis (MS), Lou Gehrig Disease (ALS), cancer, lupus, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other “enigmatic” and “incurable” conditions.
Why do dentists insist on using mercury when durable, aesthetic, nontoxic alternatives exist? Composites (white fillings) and other high quality, biocompatible restorations cost a little more than amalgams and take a little longer to make. Amalgam, on the other hand, is not so technique-sensitive. It’s cheap, quick, easy to place – and almost always reimbursed by insurance companies.
The more you know about the effects of mercury fillings on human health, the more you see how establishment dentistry has hurt people it’s meant to help – not out of malice but ignorance.
Below are materials we recommend for learning more about this topic. Each of us is the author of our own health and well-being. So we encourage you to do the research that will help you make good choices for your dental and systemic health – choices appropriate to your wants and needs. For good choices depend on understanding how and why illness arises. This is the basis of truly informed consent.
- The Only Thing that Matters Is Getting the Mercury Out, Right? (Not Quite) 
- Mercury in the Mouth: Are the Health Threats for Real? 
- Mercury in Dental Amalgam: A Risk or Not? 
Other Recommended Articles on Mercury Amalgam “Silver” Fillings
- Mercury in Medicine & Dentistry 
- Our Preferred Poison 
- Mercury Dental Amalgams: The Controversy Continues  (PDF)
- Is Dental Amalgam Safe for Humans? The Opinion of the Scientific Committee of the European Commission 
- Documented Clinical Side-Effects to Dental Amalgam 
- The Dangerousness of Mercury Vapor 
- The Effect of Dental Amalgam Restorations on Blood Mercury Levels 
- Mercury Released from Dental “Silver” Fillings Provokes an Increase in Mercury- and Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria in Oral and Intestinal Floras of Primates 
- Neurological Effects of Mercury Exposure 
- Cancer Connection to Mercury, Toxic Metals and Dental Cavitations 
- Is Mercury Toxicity an Autoimmune Disorder? 
- Are There Any Other Dental Dangers We Should Know About? 
While this article gives a good overview of common concerns about dental materials, the information on ceramic/porcelain is misleading. As explained in this excellent white paper  (PDF) from materials expert Jess Clifford, there is no such thing as “metal-free dentistry.” What matters is the form the metals take.
- Anti-Amalgam Links