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Dental Amalgam: What Others Say

Updated: May, 2015

Outside Organizations

Alzheimer's Association
"According to the best available scientific evidence, there is no relationship between silver dental fillings and Alzheimer's … Public health agencies, including the FDA, the U.S. Public Health Service and the World Health Organization, endorse the continued use of amalgam as safe, strong, inexpensive material for dental restorations."

Source: Alzheimer's Association website

Autism Society of America
"There is no known single cause for autism spectrum disorder, but it is generally accepted that it is caused by abnormalities in brain structure or function. Brain scans show differences in the shape and structure of the brain in children with autism compared to neuro-typical children. Researchers do not know the exact cause of autism but are investigating a number of theories, including the links among heredity, genetics and medical problems. In many families, there appears to be a pattern of autism or related disabilities, further supporting the theory that the disorder has a genetic basis. It also appears that some children are born with a susceptibility to autism, but researchers have not yet identified a single "trigger" that causes autism to develop."

Source: Autism Society of America website

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
"Since the 1990s, several federal agencies have reviewed the scientific literature looking for links between dental amalgam and health problems. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there is little scientific evidence that the health of the vast majority of people with dental amalgam is com- promised, nor that removing amalgam fillings has any beneficial effect on health."

Source: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency website

Mayo Clinic
"Amalgam fillings are safe. A great deal of research has examined these fillings and found them to be an effective, long-lasting treatment for dental decay. Amalgam, or silver, fillings are made with mercury, silver, tin and copper. In some cases, other metals may be included in amalgam fillings, too. Amalgam has been used for many years to replace decayed areas within teeth. It's an excellent material for this purpose. Amalgam

is a strong, stable substance that holds up well when placed in a moist environment. It's also a good choice because it can tolerate the dramatic changes in temperature within your mouth."

Source: "Amalgam is a safe and durable choice for fillings" in Medical Edge from Mayo Clinic, January 28, 2013
Mayo Clinic website

National Multiple Sclerosis Society
"There is no scientific evidence to connect the development of MS with mercury-based dental fillings. Poisoning with heavy metals-such as mercury, lead, or manganese can damage the nervous system and produce symptoms such as tremor and weakness, similar to those seen in MS. However, the underlying mechanism of the nerve damage is completely different."

Source: National Multiple Sclerosis Society website, pg. 14

"There have been claims over the years that mercury leaking from amalgam dental fillings damages the immune system and causes a broad range of diseases, including MS. While the cause of MS remains unknown, there is no scientific evidence that heavy metal poisoning is responsible for either the onset or worsening of MS. There is no reason to have your dental fillings removed or replaced. This is a very expensive procedure with no proven benefit for people with MS."

Source: National Multple Sclerosis Society website — "Dental Health" brochure, pg. 3

U.S. Food and Drug Administration
"FDA has reviewed the best available scientific evidence to determine whether the low levels of mercury vapor associated with dental amalgam fillings are a cause for concern. Based on this evidence, FDA considers dental amalgam fillings safe for adults and children ages 6 and above. The weight of credible scientific evidence reviewed by FDA does not establish an association between dental amalgam use and adverse heath effects in the general population. Clinical studies in adults and children ages 6 and above have found no link between dental amalgam fillings and health problems. The developing neurological systems in fetuses and young chkldren may be more available regarding long-term health outcomes in pregnant women and their developing fetuses, and children under the age of six, including infants who are breastfed. Pregnant women and parents with children under six who are concerned about the absence of clinical data as to long term health outcomes should talk to their dentist.

"However, the estimated amount of mercury in breast milk attributable to dental amalgam is low and falls well below general levels for oral intake that the environmental Protection Agency (EPA) considers safe. Despite the limited clinical information, FDA concludes that the existing risk information supports a finding that infants are not at risk for adverse health effects from the mercury in breast milk of women exposed to mercury vapor from dental amalgam. Some individuals have an allergy or sensitivity to mercury or the other componenets of dental amalgam (such as silver, copper, or tin). Dental amagam might cause these individuals to develop oral lesions or other contact reactions. If you are allergic to any of the metals in dental amalgam, you should not get amalgam fillings. You  can discuss other treatment options with your dentist."

Source: U.S. Food and Drug Administration website

New England Journal of Medicine
"Current concern arises from claims that long-term exposure to low concentrations of mercury vapor from amalgams either causes or exacerbates degenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis,

Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson's disease. Speculation has been most intense with respect to Alzheimer's disease after a report that the brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease had elevated mercury concentrations. However, several epidemiological investigations failed to provide evidence of a role of amalgam in these degenerative diseases ... Patients who have questions about

the potential relation between mercury and degenerative diseases can be assured that the available evidence shows no connection."

Source: New England Journal of Medicine 349;18, October 30, 2003, pp.1731-1737.

International Journal of Dentistry
"According to the available articles and data reviewed in this paper, the following conclusions can be drawn: 1) Mercury released from dental amalgam restorations does not contribute to systemic disease or systemic toxicological effects, 2) Allergic reactions to mercury from dental amalgam restorations

have been demonstrated, but these are extremely rare, and 3) Available scientific data do not justify the discontinuation of dental amalgam use from clinical practice or the replacement with other single-tooth restorative dental materials."

Source: "Biocompatibility of Dental Amalgams", November 2011

National Council Against Health Fraud
"The National Council Against Health Fraud believes that amalgam fillings are safe … " "There is no logical reason to worry about the safety of amalgam fillings."

Source: National Council Against Health Fraud website, 2002

The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR – part of the National

Institutes of Health)
"Both studies — one conducted in Europe, the other in the United States — independently reached the conclusion: Children whose cavities were filled with dental amalgam had no adverse health effects. The findings included no detectable loss of intelligence, memory, coordination, concentration, nerve conduction, or kidney function during the 5-7 years the children were followed."

Source: "Studies Evaluate Health Effects of Dental Amalgam Fillings in Children", 2006

American Cancer Society
"The American Cancer Society has no formal position on the use of mercury in dental fillings. We did have a document called Biological Dentistry on our site that discussed the studies and science around mercury fillings, which stated there was no good evidence that dental amalgams cause health problems in most people. It cited studies that found no link between mercury-containing fillings and the development of cancer and other diseases."

Source: Complete Guide to Complementary and Alternative Cancer Therapies, 2nd edition, 2009, pp.164-166.

Lupus Foundation of America
"At the present time, we do not have any scientific data that indicates that dental fillings may act as a trigger of lupus. In fact, it is highly unlikely that dental fillings aggravate or cause SLE."

Source: Lupus Foundation of America website

"The cause of autism, Alzheimer's disease, and multiple sclerosis remains unknown. Additionally, there is no solid, scientific evidence to back up the claim that if a person has amalgam fillings removed, he or she will be cured of these or any other diseases … Although amalgams do contain mercury, when they are mixed with other metals, such as silver, copper, tin, and zinc, they form a stable alloy that dentists have used for more than 100 years to fill and preserve hundreds of millions of decayed teeth."

Source: WebMD website