Amalgam was once the choice of material for dental fillings. Today we use composite resins or porcelain, but baby boomers born before the introduction of fluoride in the water would have numerous amalgam fillings. So, are these fillings toxic? Amalgam is an alloy containing mercury which can leach out and be absorbed into the body during chewing and clenching. Studies have shown a slight increase in the development of Parkinson’s disease in those with a higher number of amalgam fillings. Mercury can also leach out during procedures involving electro-magnetic waves such as MRI’s. As the population ages, mercury toxicity is likely to increase. In the 90’s the National Heart and Medical Research Council advised that amalgam fillings not be placed in pregnant women and children. Are these grounds for removing your amalgams? Absolutely! If they can be removed safely, it makes sense to replace them with a more biocompatible material.
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