(My body has MS, a disease that is linked to mercury poisoning. I will never know conclusively if mercury fillings in my teeth – now all removed – were causative to the disease. If so, that particular poison was not alone. My generation was raised on a wide variety of poisons. The younger generations have been raised on some of the same (like fluoridated water, pesticides on food, antibiotics in animal products). But the younger generations have different scourges as well, most under the radar but doing terrible damage to the brains and gastro-intestinal health of millions of people. An informed person is no longer a consumer of poisons but is a person who makes wise choices. Take care of yourself and your family.)
The Environment Depends on a Phase-Out of Dental Amalgam
In order to protect human health and the environment, mercury should be phased out as soon, and as quickly, as possible. The international treaty, named the Minamata Convention on Mercury, requires the phasing out of many mercury-containing products, including thermometers, by 2020, and also calls for an end to all mercury mining within 15 years. It also includes a mandatory phase down of amalgam use. The treaty takes effect only after its ratification by 50 nations, which can take three or four years.
Instead of working for the phase-down and ultimate phase-out of amalgam use, the FDA and the American Dental Association (ADA) are pushing stalling tactics, saying that before phasing out amalgam we should go through a litany of diversions like (1) prevention of tooth decay, (2) research and mercury inventories, and (3) mercury waste management – none of which actually phase down amalgam use, as required by the Minamata Convention. These stalling tactics can appear attractive at first glance. But don’t be fooled by the World Dental Federation: all three of their “amalgam phase-down measures” are designed to delay the demise of mercury fillings.
No more research is needed before we take action – the many effective, affordable, and available mercury-free alternatives have already been researched for over half a century, and we certainly don’t need any more research telling us that mercury is a problem. And the realistic solution to waste management, of course, is to stop creating more mercury waste – i.e., stop using amalgam. Clearly, if the World Dental Federation gets its way, amalgam will be around for a long time. But groups like BAN Toxics, which is calling for an immediate ban on amalgam in the Philippines, and others are pushing to get mercury phased out around the globe quickly and for good.
Help Put an End to Mercury Pollution
Does your dentist use mercury fillings? On any patient? If so, it’s time that he/she and you had a talk. Let’s face it: the dental amalgam industry — manufacturers and pro-mercury dentists — are the biggest mercury polluters in America. It’s time for every American consumer (1) to insist on mercury-free dental fillings, and (2) to spend his or her hard-earned dollars on the non-polluting dentist, the mercury-free dentistry.
The Campaign for Mercury-Free Dentistry, the project organized and led by Charlie Brown of Consumers for Dental Choice, has made amazing progress toward mercury-free dentistry. But there’s still hard work ahead as Consumers for Dental Choice is now running education programs for consumers, holding training sessions for dentists, and organizing briefings for governments around the world. You can help stop dental mercury today! Will you please consider a donation to Consumers for Dental Choice, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to advocating mercury-free dentistry? Donations are tax-exempt and can be made online at http://www.toxicteeth.org. Checks can be mailed to:
Consumers for Dental Choice
316 F St., N.E., Suite 210
Washington DC 20002
For updates on the movement for mercury-free dentistry, join Consumers for Dental Choice on Facebook or sign up to receive their newsletter. You can also take a stand with us and tell the EPA not to let polluting dentists off the hook: It’s time to stop dental mercury dumping.