UN Mercury Free Treaty Seeks to Phase Out Metal Amalgam

Mercury Free Dentistry May Soon Be Required By UN Treaty

Mercury Free Dentistry

Dr. Nadler has offered only mercury free dentistry for over 20 years!

The American Dental Association officially states that the mercury in amalgam fillings is safe. Be that as it may, our office has taken no chances with your health, having offered only metal-free fillings for the past twenty plus years. While several countries have banned the use of amalgam fillings, its use in the U.S. is still prevalent. A recent report by the Concord East/West consulting firm stating that 32 tons of dental mercury is used annually in the U.S. Besides possible health effects, there is concern over the environmental impact of amalgam fillings. According to the E.P.A., “approximately 50 percent of mercury entering local waste treatment plants comes from dental amalgam waste”, costing taxpayers an additional $41 per filling for environmental costs, cleanup and waste treatment.

However, all of this may soon change. As reported by foxnews.com, by next year, the United Nations Environmental Programme will have completed the text of a legally binding, global treaty on mercury pollution. The treaty is supported by the U.S. State Department, and will serve to phase out the use of products containing mercury. Amalgam fillings on are on the treaty’s list of products to be phased out. If the treaty passes all dentists may be facing a global mandate to stop the use of silver amalgam fillings completely.

The treaty and the phase out of amalgam in dental restorations are not without controversy. The treaty is supported by organizations such as the World Health Organization, but others see it as a scare tactic used simply to enforce further regulations. There is ongoing debate among dental and other health professionals about the possible health risks of mercury exposure from amalgam fillings and whether the mercury present in the fillings is enough to cause any risk.

If the treaty passes, whether or not there are in fact health risks related to the use of mercury in fillings, dentists across the country and the entire world will be affected and forced to change their treatment choices. The ADA “has expressed the view that any proposed ‘phase-down’ of dental amalgam should be linked to a ‘phase-up’ of dental preventive programs. We have also focused on the safety of dental amalgam, the need for further dental materials research and the proper management of dental amalgam waste”, addressing both health and environmental factors in its response.

The next conference of the UNEP to discuss the progress of the “mercury free treaty” will be held in June.

LINKS AND RESOURCES

Read more about the proposed U.N. “mercury-free” treaty 

More on the environmental impacts of mercury fillings from the International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology

ADA Leadership Report response to the UN treaty meetings

NOTE: Originally posted April 24th, 2012