Dental amalgam filling is composed of silver alloy( 35% silver, and 15% tin, copper and other metals) combined with mercury. The whole controversy over safety applies to the use of mercury. No doubt that mercury is a known toxin and some people are allergic to it. Amalgam fillings are usually used on the back teeth (molars) or grinder teeth, where we need them for chewing.
A question is being raised about this material that has been used for at least 150 years — Amalgam tooth fillings. The Journal of the American Medical Association published a study on April 19, 2006 showed that, more mercury in the urine of children who received amalgam fillings than others received resin fillings. However, the children sample with the amalgam fillings did not have a decrease in IQ or memory and even did not have any higher rate of kidney problems. Another study in 2009 by the FDA confirmed that, amalgam fillings are safe to use for adults and children above 6 but cautioned the pregnant, nursing mothers and parents with young children. Clinical studies in these groups have found no link between dental amalgam fillings and causing health problems.
Dental consideration with the use amalgam filling on the following cases:
– Do not have amalgam fillings placed or removed, during pregnancy. Removal releases mercury.
– Children less than 6 years of age should consider other filling materials to restore teeth.
– In case of allergy to mercury or impaired kidney function, avoid using amalgam fillings.
– Consider removal/replace of the dental amalgam fillings only when they are worn, broken or when there is decay beneath the filling.