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, 19 (2), 81-8

The Dental Amalgam Toxicity Fear: A Myth or Actuality

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The Dental Amalgam Toxicity Fear: A Myth or Actuality

Monika Rathore et al. Toxicol Int.

Abstract

Amalgam has been used in dentistry since about 150 years and is still being used due to its low cost, ease of application, strength, durability, and bacteriostatic effect. When aesthetics is not a concern it can be used in individuals of all ages, in stress bearing areas, foundation for cast-metal and ceramic restorations and poor oral hygiene conditions. Besides all, it has other advantages like if placed under ideal conditions, it is more durable and long lasting and least technique sensitive of all restorative materials, but, concern has been raised that amalgam causes mercury toxicity. Mercury is found in the earth's crust and is ubiquitous in the environment, so even without amalgam restorations everyone is exposed to small but measurable amount of mercury in blood and urine. Dental amalgam restorations may raise these levels slightly, but this has no practical or clinical significance. The main exposure to mercury from dental amalgam occurs during placement or removal of restoration in the tooth. Once the reaction is complete less amount of mercury is released, and that is far below the current health standard. Though amalgam is capable of producing delayed hypersensitivity reactions in some individuals, if the recommended mercury hygiene procedures are followed the risks of adverse health effects could be minimized. For this review the electronic databases and PubMed were used as data sources and have been evaluated to produce the facts regarding amalgam's safety and toxicity.

Keywords: Amalgam; mercury; myth; restoration; safety; tooth; toxicity.

Conflict of interest statement

Conflict of Interest: None declared.

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