e-mail Print Share
News Releases

American Dental Association Reaffirms Position on Dental Amalgam

September 30, 2016

Contact Information:
mediarelations@ada.org

CHICAGO – A recent study published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety questions whether people with multiple dental amalgam fillings experience an increase in mercury levels in their blood. The American Dental Association has examined the study and its findings and reaffirms its position that dental amalgam is a durable, safe and effective cavity-filling option.

The mercury levels cited in the study did not exceed a level that according to the National Academy of Sciences would be known to cause adverse health effects. Thus no conclusions about the safety of dental amalgam should be drawn from this study. In addition, the study used data that included two different types of dental materials: composite, which does not contain mercury and dental amalgam, made from a combination of metals including silver, copper, tin and mercury. It is important to note that since the study does not differentiate between the two filling materials, the study’s findings may be prone to over-interpretation.  

Dental amalgam has been studied and reviewed extensively by U.S. public health agencies, and has a long-established record of safety and effectiveness. To learn more, read the ADA’s statement on dental amalgam.

Patients should consult with their dentists to decide which filling material is best for them based on a number of factors, such as size and location of the cavity, patient history, cosmetic concerns and cost. The American Dental Association offers information about all dental filling materials at MouthHealthy.org.

About the ADA

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation's largest dental association, representing 159,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA's state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The monthly The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA's flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit ADA.org. For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA's consumer website MouthHealthy.org