The International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology has released an info-graphic, Dental Mercury’s Toxic Journey Back to the Environment, that outlines the many ways in which 340 tons of dental mercury is released into the global environment yearly.
This study performed an assessment of the discharge from dental facilities of mercury in the form of amalgam to surface waters in the United States. Two pathways were examined, effluent from publicly owned treatment works (POTWs) and air emissions from sewage sludge incinerators. Mercury in the form of amalgam from dental facilities to POTWs was estimated to be 6.5 tons
Two different methods used to measure mercury (Hg) vapor levels in the air exhausted from dental vacuum systems revealed that Hg vapor release to the atmosphere from dental vacuums can be substantial and exceed human exposure limits.
This study investigated residual mercury (Hg) determinations and toxicity characteristic leaching procedure (TCLP) analysis of used amalgam capsules. All capsules tested retained Hg. TCLP analysis of the triturated capsules showed Sybraloye and Contoure leached Hg at greater than the 0.2 mg/l Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) limit.
Alex Cain of the EPA published a study in the Journal of Industrial Ecology that evaluated the substance flow analysis of dental mercury releases Into the environment. His comprehensive analysis revealed dentists releaase up to 24 tons of mercury into the environment, a level much more significant than previously thought, which warrants being addressed.
In 2002, the ADA released an assessment entitled "Evaluation of Mercury in Dental Facility Wastewater." The report argued that dental offices were not a significant source of mercury contamination. The Association of Municipal Sewage Authorities released a critique of the ADA report, taking serious issue with most of its findings.
A hold over deal from the Bush administration is allowing tons of dental mercury pollution into the environment that could be prevented. The agreement between the EPA, the American Dental Association and the National Association of Clean Water Agencies stands in stark contrast to pollution reduction initiatives now underway for all other mercury sources.
Mercuryexposure.info was created and is maintained by consumers injured from exposure to mercury vapor and particles released by their dental amalgam fillings during placement, polishing, removal and day to day use. We are dedicated to providing accurate, up to date information on the many facets of dental mercury amalgam fillings.