I have seen patients with various complaints from: infertility, anxiety, depression, chronic sinusitis, high blood pressure, fibromyalgia, and many autoimmune disorders, test very high for heavy metals, including Mercury. Though mercury exposure can come from several sources (fish, thimerosal vaccine preservative, coal fumes, etc) – dental amalgams may prove to be a source of chronic exposure if they are in your mouth!
Dental fillings, aka amalgams, are typically made from liquid (elemental) mercury combined with a powder of several other metals. Mercury is a heavy metal and also a known neurotoxin, or brain and nervous system disruptor. Acute exposure to this type of mercury is known to cause: vomiting, difficulty breathing, cough and bleeding gums. However, according to the National Institute for Health (NIH), long-term exposure, can lead to “…permanent lung damage or death. You may also have some long-term brain damage from inhaled elemental mercury.”(1) This long-term exposure could be due to the daily exposure of having amalgams in the mouth. The longer they have been there, the longer the exposure.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “When amalgam fillings are placed in or removed from teeth, they can release a small amount of mercury vapor. Amalgam can also release small amounts of mercury vapor during chewing, and people can absorb these vapors by inhaling or ingesting them. High levels of mercury vapor exposure are associated with adverse effects in the brain and the kidneys.”(2)
In addition to this, it is noteworthy to consider the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), concept of energy meridians running through the mouth. TCM, which dates back over 5000 years, studies the occurrence of energy lines (meridians) that run through the body. When these meridians become blocked, stagnant, or the current is not flowing optimally, one’s health is affected. Since these meridians also run through the teeth, and mercury is a positively charged ion, the change in current around the amalgams could theoretically affect the overall health status of the body.
It should also be mentioned, that if pregnancy is on the horizon, a fetus will concentrate the toxic load (including the accumulation of heavy metals) of a mother. With Austism, ADD, ADHD and various other neurological disorders in children on the rise, why not keep our exposures to a minimum?