Quack Attack

The dental fillings have been in place since some time in the 70s. When Dr. Koostra put them there. Dr. Koostra, who based on deportment and appearance presumably escaped an eastern block country some time in the 50s. Dr. Koostra, who’s poorly lit office smelled of strange chemicals and with odd cartoons of naked little alien creatures on the walls. Dr. Koostra who’s haunting voice raised images of Bella Lagosi. “I vant to suck your blood.”
Lying on the back, mouth wide open, vague memories are of pain, discomfort and the droning voice “open…now a leetle pain…vider please.”

With the following results:

Silver in color, the fillings the doctor placed in the mouth contain less silver than mercury. Of course dentists recognized early on that calling them “mercury fillings” would not go over so well. Mad Hatter Disease anyone? So they came up with the name “dental amalgam.” No need to deceive with a name that avoids the issue altogether.

At issue is whether these fillings, containing as much as 50% mercury, are toxic. After the cleaning of the colon, the liver and the gall bladder, shouldn’t the contents of the upper end of the nutritional subway be considered for potential sources of ill health, death even?

The mercury is added to the filling material because it makes it more malleable and binds the other metals.

But anyone who’s broken a thermometer in chemistry class to play with the silvery beads inside, knows that mercury is a liquid at room temperature. How about at mouth temperature? What do you think happens in there? And what about when coffee or tea are consumed, or Mom’s chicken noodle soup, Dawn’s beet borscht?

The problem with mercury is its toxicity to human cells, especially neurons (yep, that includes yer brain), the gut cells, the liver and kidneys. By itself, mercury is classified as a hazardous substance by the US Environmental Protection Agency, and is considered a powerful poison, 5000 times more toxic than lead.

So how the heck did we end up with mercury in our fillings?

In the 1830s dentists in America fractured into two groups: those favoring mercury fillings and those opposed to them. The American Society of Dental Surgeons disliked mercury amalgam’s tendency to fracture teeth as it expanded in fillings. They were a little concerned about mercury’s side effects too, like insanity and loss of motor function from nerve damage.

Members of the ASDS pledged never to use amalgam for fillings. And they referred to dentists who used mercury as quacks, because this is short for quackenslaver – the German word for mercury. Who were these dentists who favored using mercury-filled amalgams? They became the American Dental Association.

In time, addition of tin to the mixture solved the problem of expansion of the amalgams. So, despite the risk to their patients, over the years more and more dentists turned to using them because they are cheaper and easier to use than other filling materials.

Like an ostrich with its head in the sand, the ADA avoids conducting human safety studies of mercury amalgams. They contend that they’ve been doing it this way for 150 years so it must be safe. Huh?

Independent researchers have done the studies though and found that mercury is released from dental fillings to a significant degree. Released to travel about the body, it impairs kidney function, causes autoimmune diseases, impairs fetal development and may cause infertility. In essence mercury effects the entire body because it attacks at the level of the nervous system.

So with optimum health as a goal, it was decided Dr. Koostra’s fillings had to go. Despite the 30 odd years relationship.

Enter: Dr. Rosa Pena. Mexican dentist extraordinaire.

Two and a half hours later, six fillings had been expertly replaced with a white “composite” material. And the results speak for themselves.


For a detailed description of the history and politics surrounding the use of dental amalgams click HERE.