Mercury – everyone has heard of it, and most would agree that it is a toxic substance. But just how toxic is it? Every two years the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry publishes a “Substance Priority List” which looks at a host of toxic substances and their frequency, toxicity, and potential for human exposure at facilities on the “National Priorities List.” The last substance list was published in 2015 and consisted of 275 hazardous substances to avoid. Ranking in at a jaw dropping third on the list was none other then Mercury itself. In fact, more and more published studies are saying mercury, even in the tiniest of amounts, is more harmful to the human body then heavy metals such as lead, cadmium, and even arsenic. In addition, the World Health Organization deems mercury as one of the top ten most toxic chemicals of public health concern.

What makes Mercury so unique? Out of all of the various heavy metals, mercury is the only one that is liquid at room temperature. It gives off a colorless, odorless, tasteless, and toxic vapor. Still, many people would say that in small amounts it is not harmful to humans, and some even go on to say that it can actually be beneficial to mankind. In fact, a whopping 11,000 tons of mercury, in its various forms, are released into the environment annually!! This includes things like Cinnabar (mercuric sulphite), which is used for red pigment in many tattoo salons; calomel (mercurous chloride), a common treatment for diaper rash; mercury vapor lamps to generate brighter lighting; and the biggest culprit – mercury amalgam dental fillings.

Though not as common today, mercury amalgam fillings were once the choice material to repair broken and decayed teeth. As a result, many of us are left with a mouth full of those shinny silver fillings, and unfortunately, often a host of various chronic illnesses. According to the American Dental Association 1.0-2.0 mcg of mercury vapor is released into the body every day. Even worse, the World Health Organization estimates a staggering 3.0-17.5 mcg per day with an average of 10.0 mcg and an extreme level as high as 100.0 mcg per day. Once inhaled, mercury vapor is readily absorbed across pulmonary membranes and can cause serious health concerns for the person, and even the child in utero. All this to say, the main source of mercury toxicity comes from a substance that is completely avoidable – dental amalgam fillings.

Next week, I plan to address some of the various symptoms of mercury toxicity, and what you should do if you suspect toxicity in you. Later on down the road, I will discuss topics such as the safe removal of amalgam fillings by a trained and certified “mercury safe dentist” such as Dr. Sperbeck, and then I will continue on to the topic of proper detoxification from mercury. In the meantime, if you have any further questions on mercury and its safe removal, please don’t hesitate to give our office a call at (844) 853- 9571