Book Review: The Poison in Your Teeth: Mercury Amalgam (Silver) Fillings…. Hazardous to Your Health
Author: By Tom McGuire, DDS
Dr. McGuire begins his book by sharing the fact that “mercury is the most poisonous, non-radioactive, naturally occurring substance on our planet.” He also states that there is no amount of mercury that is safe for the human body. Amalgam or “silver” fillings are 50% mercury. These facts would naturally lead anyone to ask……why then is this most dangerous substance being place in our mouths? Those agencies which are pro-amalgam educate dentists and the public to the idea that the mercury in the filling material is so tightly attached to the silver in the filling that it would be impossible for the mercury to escape and leach into the body. However, the author of this book completely refutes this claim. Using science to back his statements, Dr. McGuire explains to us very clearly what normal everyday conditions in the mouth cause the mercury fillings to create vapor, which escapes from the fillings and enters into the body.
The book discusses the fact that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has labeled the ingredients and particles in amalgam fillings as toxic waste. The EPA requires that leftover amalgam or amalgam that has been removed from a tooth, must be placed in a toxic hazardous waste container and that anyone who doesn’t comply with this regulation is subject to a fine. The author asks the reader to reflect on this conundrum. “Think about it. The EPA considers the material that make up an amalgam filling – and the amalgam itself – toxic waste. But now we come to the scary part. If the components of an amalgam filling, and the filling itself, are considered hazardous waste – what does that make the teeth they are put into? That’s right. It makes them hazardous waste containers! Even worse, these waste containers don’t have a lid, and you’re forced to take them wherever you go.”
OSHA safety requirements state that the staff in a dental office must not handle amalgam without protection and that amalgam must be stored away from heat and must be tightly sealed in hazardous waste containers. Amalgam waste particles also must be covered with liquid to prevent mercury vapor from escaping the waste material and exposing the office staff. The author warns us what we would have to do in order to follow these regulations, concerning the fillings in our mouths. “These regulations make complete sense. But imagine if they were extended to the amalgams in your teeth. It would mean that you couldn’t touch your fillings without first putting on gloves. You’d have to cover your tongue before it touched the fillings, and you would be required to keep your teeth covered with a protective liquid 24/7.”
After thoroughly educating the reader about the symptoms and diseases directly related to mercury exposure, the author moves on to tell us what we can do about our toxic exposures and more importantly….how we can do it safely. Mercury can be a heavy stress on the body and many patients dealing with chronic illness greatly improve when these mercury fillings are removed by a dentist who is knowledgeable in the proper amalgam removal procedures. Dr. McGuire includes a section on how to find”mercury free” or a “mercury safe” dentist and what the difference is between the two. Removal of mercury fillings must be done according to a specific protocol which minimizes the exposure to mercury vapors during the removal process.
Once one decides to remove their fillings, it must be determined what materials the replacement fillings will be composed of. The author talks about the safety of the various types of replacement dental materials. He discusses biocompatibility testing which aids patients in deciding which composite materials are best suited to the patient’s particular immune system. It is suggested that anyone with allergies and multiple sensitivities be tested in this manner. If for some reason a patient cannot have their fillings removed right away…or at all….McGuire recommends measures to minimize exposure to the mercury vapors.
The author talks about nutritional and supplemental support during the process of detoxifying the mercury from the body. He lists the important supplements that will help in this process. The book “Poison in Your Teeth, includes information concerning what to expect in the way of improvement. The author explains to the reader that improvement in health takes time and depends on the amount of mercury that has accumulated and the condition of the person’s immune system. There are helpful charts that list the types of symptoms and the percentage of them that were improved or eliminated. Dr. McGuire realizes that if people are trying to decide whether or not it would be worth the expense to have their fillings removed, they would want to be aware of how much of a chance they would have for improvement.
Another section of the book concerns the American Dental Association and the politics surrounding the continued use and endorsement of amalgam fillings. Also included is legal and moral advice to help guide the pro-amalgam dentists. In the resources section at the end of the book, there is a list of holistic dental organizations and laboratories that specialize in mercury testing.
I found the book “The Poison in Your Teeth” to be very thorough and easy to read. The subject matter of the book is of great importance. Living in modern society exposes us daily to harmful chemicals and modified organisms. We certainly do not need the extra burden of permanent toxic exposures that can be prevented by simply using safer materials. Dr. McGuire is passionate about helping others to realize the dangers of mercury poisoning from amalgam fillings and I recommend his book to those of you who care about your personal health, your children’s health and the health of the environment as a whole.