CHAMPIONSGATE, Fla., Dec. 15, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Last week, three EU institutions (the European Parliament, the European Commission and the Council of the European Union) reached a provisional agreement to ban dental amalgam fillings for children under 15 and pregnant and breastfeeding women as of July 1, 2018. These actions in Europe are being supported by the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology (IAOMT), a non-profit group that encourages worldwide efforts to end dental mercury.
"Mercury is toxic, and its use in all silver-colored dental fillings has been linked to environmental harm, as well as increased risks of Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, infertility, anxiety, depression, fatigue, and many other adverse health conditions. Viable alternatives to these fillings have existed for decades. It's crucial for all of the world to follow Europe's lead and take action to restrict dental mercury, and even more efficiently, to end its use entirely," explained Dr. Tammy DeGregorio, IAOMT President.
The IAOMT has collected hundreds of research studies about the health and environmental hazards of dental mercury and has used this scientific literature to create resources for dentists, medical practitioners, policymakers, and the public.
Dental amalgam mercury is still used on approximately 45% of dental patients worldwide, including in the USA, and hundreds of millions of people have these mercury-containing fillings in their mouths. Many patients are unaware that their silver fillings are made of 50% mercury, and patients are also often shocked to learn that this mercury can harm the environment, as well as potentially create health risks for dental patients and their fetuses and breast-fed children.
Some consumers have their mercury fillings removed due to device failure, medical reasons, or personal preference. However, removing amalgam fillings without safety measures can pose a threat to the environment, dental patients, dentists, and others due to mercury releases. For this reason, the IAOMT has developed a scientifically-supported Safe Mercury Amalgam Removal Technique (SMART) that utilizes dental amalgam separators, water irrigation, high-volume suction, mercury-filter masks, and other rigorous safety measures.
The IAOMT also created "The SMART Choice" to explain what the SMART protocol is, why it's important, and how patients can find dentists with training in SMART. The grassroots campaign encourages communication between patients and dentists about safe mercury amalgam filling removal.
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SOURCE International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology