Dental Amalgam Hazard

FDA finally announced new guideline for dental amalgam.

On September 24, 2020, the FDA provided recommendations about the use of dental amalgam, a mercury-containing dental restorative (filling) material, in certain groups of people who may be at greater risk to the potential adverse health effects of mercury exposure. These groups are as follows:

  • Pregnant women and their developing fetuses;
  • Women who are planning to become pregnant;
  • Nursing women and their newborns and infants;
  • Children, especially those younger than six years of age;
  • People with pre-existing neurological disease;
  • People with impaired kidney function; and
  • People with known heightened sensitivity (allergy) to mercury or other components of dental amalgam.

Dental amalgam is mixture of metal alloy including Copper and Mercury. The Mercury is known toxic metal for human. I have grown up in Korea next to Japan. We, Koreans all heard about “minamata disease” from Japan. The minamata disease is a neurological syndrome caused by severe mercury poisoning. Symptoms include ataxia, numbness in the hands and feet, general muscle weakness, narrowing of the field of vision and damage to hearing and speech. It happened as a public disaster in Japan at 1956. If you google it , you will see horrible pictures of it.

I ban amalgam in my practice from start. I am against of any material which I don’t like to use on me and my family, even though it is legally on sale in USA or FDA approved. I have 9 years boy. I treat all of my kid patients as my son. It is my rule from beginning.

Medi-cal allow or encourage us to use dental amalgam on kids because it is cheap to reimburse. I am against of it. I have never used amalgam on kids. If patient refuses my recommendation because of financial issue, I kindly refer them another office. However, I feel sad…. However, I don’t have proof till FDA finally change their Guideline as above.

These shows typical dental amagalm treatment with medi-cal coverage. Too many and too much….. The teeth with amalgams eventually flex and break. Once it is broken, It break so badly .. The option for that tooth is only extraction..

Dental amalgam already banned in Korea and Japan , most of Europe countries. It is a little bit late but I am glad that FDA finally support my philosopy.

Thanks for reading.

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