woman receiving white fillingWhen filling in the pockets in teeth created by drilling out a cavity infection, until recently dentists used amalgam (which looks silver).  Fillings are important because they help restore teeth damaged by decay back to their normal function, and can prevent further decay. Nearly half of the weight of amalgam fillings, however, is comprised of the element Mercury. That’s not great. Mercury has been shown to be associated with dementia and gastrointestinal problems. It is also thought to show some relation to conditions like ADHD.

While metal alloy fillings can cause tissue irritation in persons with metal sensitivities, it is also suspected that the body is exposed to mercury on a daily basis during normal chewing and use of the mouth.

A study conducted in Germany showed that individuals who had amalgam fillings had increased rates of mercury levels in their body during their autopsy as opposed to people who had no amalgam fillings. Levels of mercury in the liver and brain measured extremely toxic.

Years in the future, we now have access to advanced dental materials that allow us to fill teeth with tooth-colored, mercury free fillings. These composite fillings are also more aesthetic as they are made to match the teeth around them.

Composite fillings also are less invasive to the tooth structure than amalgam fillings. Composite filling material bonds directly to the tooth structure, while amalgam fillings are wedged in and require the removal of more tooth structure.

Removal of amalgam (Mercury) fillings and replacing them with a composite, tooth colored filling can reduce mouth irritation caused by metal sensitivity and reduce the risk of mercury exposure. Dr. Laskis uses special techniques to remove metal fillings and filtration devices that prevent the mercury from re-entering the environment.

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