There is a very good chance that if you’ve gotten fillings in your lifetime, they’re made up of dental amalgam. This silver-hued material has been used by dentists for decades, however lately it’s been looked at more closely, given the high concentration of mercury (approximately 50%) in the compound. Low levels of mercury vapor are released over the course of the filling’s lifetime, although the amount of vapor released goes up when chewing, drinking hot or cold beverages, or grinding your teeth. A high level of exposure to mercury vapor has been linked to brain and kidney conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease or multiple sclerosis. If you’re thinking about removing your amalgam fillings, our holistic dentistry practice in Seattle can help.
Are You Really At Risk?
Much debate has been had over the risk factors associated with amalgam fillings. The FDA has stated that when mercury is combined with other materials, they form a stable alloy. That being said, the FDA has also confirmed that amalgam fillings should not be used in children under the age of six, and that there is limited information on how amalgam fillings can impact pregnant women and their developing fetuses. In addition, if you have an allergy to mercury or the other ingredients used to make mercury a stable ingredient in the amalgam compound, you may see an allergic reaction in the form of an oral lesion. Ultimately, mercury vapor can find its way into your lungs and your bloodstream. From a holistic dentistry standpoint, mercury is a known neurotoxin – one that really has no place in the human body, even if only consumed in small amounts.
Removing Your Fillings
The first step in ridding your system of mercury vapor is to remove any existing fillings made from amalgam. At our Seattle holistic dentistry clinic, we have a comprehensive protocol for removing mercury fillings that takes into consideration your well-being before, during and after the procedure. Prior to having your fillings replaced, you may want to consider working with a naturopathic doctor or nutritionist in Seattle to explore the health effects and toxicity level of your existing amalgam fillings and how to detoxify – whether through making dietary changes, undergoing lymphatic draining or other holistic methods. In addition, you should also undergo compatibility testing to determine what replacement material is best suited to your personal health needs. During the procedure itself, rest assured that various measures are taken to limit any further exposure to the mercury vapor.
While mercury is the number one concern when it comes to amalgam fillings, it’s important to consider how the metal compounds – such as zinc or silver – amalgam fillings are made of can impact your general health. Holistic dentistry is about creating synergy between all of your systems. Metal particles that enter your intestines and bloodstream can create electrical currents that disrupt your body’s flow of energy. In addition, metal fillings can weaken your tooth, to the point where the filling may outlast the tooth itself. This is partially because amalgam fillings actually require the removal of healthy tooth tissue. The best holistic dentistry solution then, are non-metal fillings such as those made with ceramic or composite resins. These bio-compatible options are of course mercury-free, plus they won’t disrupt your body’s systems through the release of toxins or electrical currents. In addition, they are more cosmetically attractive because they can be color-matched to your tooth shade for a more natural look. Finally, composite fillings are more precise, as the material can be effectively applied to any shape of tooth decay, meaning you won’t lose healthy teeth tissue – a key aspect of a holistic dentistry approach.