Are you worried about the mercury fillings in your mouth?
Many people forget that your teeth and gums aren’t a singular entity. Rather, they work together with the rest of your body to maintain your overall health and wellbeing. This means, like any other area of your body, it’s important to be mindful of the materials your put in your teeth.
Fillings are a common procedure that have, for years, been used to treat cavities. However, with rapid advances in technology over just the past decade, such as composite (or tooth coloured fillings) have proven to be a much better alternative.
What Are Mercury Fillings?
Mercury fillings, otherwise known as amalgam fillings or silver fillings, have been used to treat cavities for over 150 years. As a result, many people still have mercury fillings in their teeth today. Amalgam is made from a combination of metals. These typically include silver, mercury, tin and copper. On occasion, amalgam has also been known to include elements of palladium, indium or zinc as well.
Mercury is used in amalgam because it allows the material to be more dextrous. When integrated with alloy powder, it becomes soft enough to press into cavities within teeth. This type of filling also hardens very quickly.
The Dangers Associated With Mercury Fillings
Although mercury fillings have been used for years, there has been increasing concern over recent years about their potential to cause mercury poisoning. Mercury, a naturally occurring metal, is toxic to the central and peripheral nervous systems of the human body. If exposed to prolonged inhalation or absorption of mercury, it has been suggested that people could sustain prolonged issues with their nervous, immune and digestive systems. That is why many people have begun to express concern over the use of mercury in amalgam fillings.
Until recently, experts had thought that amalgam fillings could not have any broader effects on the body. This was fuelled by the idea that, once placed in the tooth, the mercury in the tooth would become passive and no longer be released. Recent tests have suggested that this may not be the case, and that mercury can, in fact, be released as the fillings wear down over time. Because your teeth are so closely connected to the brain, nervous system and digestive system, these are the areas of your body most likely to absorb the mercury.
Mercury poisoning from amalgam fillings is a worrisome area in the dental field. Scientific studies have proven that the release of mercury varies depending on the person. However, it can potentially exacerbate several conditions if not treated properly. If people are already susceptible to conditions like kidney disease, autoimmune disorders, reproductive dysfunction, chronic fatigue and a number of other illnesses, mercury can be a dangerous material to have in your body. Children and pregnant women are also particularly susceptible.
Some of the symptoms associated with mercury poisoning include:
- Impairment of your peripheral vision
- Loos of coordination
- A stinging sensation in the mouth, hands and feet
- Weakness in muscles
- Impairment of your hearing and speech
If you experience any symptoms of mercury poisoning or diseases associated with mercury poisoning from fillings, make sure you visit a doctor immediately.
Luckily, with rapid advances in technology and research in the past few years, Dr Olstein now proudly provides an excellent alternative to mercury fillings. Tooth coloured fillings serve the exact same purpose as amalgam solutions, except these are mercury free fillings. Research has shown that that tooth coloured fillings actually help to strengthen your teeth, in addition to eliminating the potential for mercury poisoning from fillings.
Tooth coloured fillings are typically made from a setting agent, ceramic, plastic and glass materials. When these composite fillings initially emerged on the market years ago, the material was unfortunately too weak to be used on back teeth. This meant that amalgam fillings were still used in most dental practices. Luckily, with recent developments in technology, Dr Olstein and our experienced team are happy to exclusively administer white, tooth coloured fillings to all cavities, decayed or broken teeth.
Because white fillings are bonded to your original tooth structure, research has shown it to actually make your tooth stronger compared with amalgam which is mechanically locked into your tooth and therefore weakens it.
Luckily, Dr Olstein’s alternative to mercury fillings means that you and your children will never have to worry about any further effects of mercury fillings. As an added bonus, our tooth coloured resin also means your teeth will be kept pearly white.
To book an appointment with Dr Olstein or one of our experienced staff members, simply book online today..