What’s perfectly safe but still needs a warning label?
No, it’s not a riddle. It’s just the latest brilliant decision from the FDA.
That’s right—the FDA has made a final ruling on dental fillings that contain mercury, and it seems we can all breathe a sigh of relief.
Because dental amalgam is perfectly safe! Case closed!
Well, sort of…because the FDA has actually upgraded this "safe" filling material from low-risk to moderate-risk. (Yeah, that had me scratching my head, too.)
They’ve recommended that dental professionals use adequate ventilation when handling dental amalgam, and that product labeling should include a statement of the potential benefits and risks.
This labeling decision was applauded by the president of the American Dental Association, who noted that identifying these benefits and risks will "help patients make educated decisions regarding their dental care."
Okay, so let’s take a look. Potential benefits identified on the FDA’s website: Dental amalgam fillings are strong, long-lasting, and less expensive than other dental filling materials.
And the potential risks? "Dental amalgam contains elemental mercury. It releases low levels of mercury vapor that can be inhaled."
And that’s it.
Nothing about the fact that the EPA considers mercury to be "a persistent bioaccumulative toxic chemical." A chemical that accumulates in the brain, contributes to autoimmune disorders, damages nerve cells and ravages the immune system. And there’s no mention of the fact that the disposal of dental amalgam is regulated by the EPA in an attempt to keep it out of our water supply.
And that’s just the SHORT list of disturbing facts the FDA ignores in their tidy little statement about the "potential risks" of dental amalgam. But at least they’re here to help us make those informed decisions, right?
Ms. O’Brien has written for Nutrition & Healing, Healthier Talk and a variety of other natural and alternative health outlets. She believes in the power of natural medicine and her goal is to open people’s eyes to the benefits of alternative and integrative medicine.
Christine is passionate about helping people help themselves without having to turn to harsh drugs or invasive surgeries.
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