Pros and Cons of Amalgam Fillings

Pros and Cons of Amalgam Fillings

All Serbian dentists, in their practice, come across patients’ requests to replace old amalgam fillings with new, composite ones. Are these requests justified, and if they are, how? EU made the decision, valid from July 1, 2018, to ban the use of amalgam fillings in children younger than 15, pregnant, and breastfeeding women. This is a faze prior to a complete ban of dental fillings that contain mercury,
planned for 2030. However, there is no data to prove that amalgam fillings are dangerous for patients, especially not old amalgam fillings that have been set in the teeth for a long time.

Still, the research has shown that, in some circumstances, amalgam fillings can lead to mercury poisoning. Besides, there is an increasing concern about the health risks related to working with mercury and disposing it to waste, as well as cremating individuals with amalgam fillings. The research of medical condition, conducted among employees in dental clinics, has shown that exposure to mercury from amalgam during setting in and removing the filling can cause chronic diseases, depression, and anxiety.

Although the use of amalgam is decreased in many developed countries, in developing countries amalgam is still commonly used for dental fillings. Our dental profession should be dedicated to decreasing and completely ejecting amalgam from dental practice, due to the harmful impact of mercury on the health of people and the environment. We, as dentists, have a responsibility to find better, more reliable, and accessible alternative for dental amalgam. We owe it to our patients.

Dr Mirjana Kandić
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