Okemos Dental Services
It All Begins with Your Smile. Award-Winning Dental Care in Okemos & Beyond

Facts about Amalgams (silver fillings!)

Did you know silver fillings are called amalgams?


Amalgams are made up of a combination of mercury, silver, tin, and copper.
I was shocked to find out that the average American between 20 and 64 has 17.31 fillings. Wow! I want you to understand what the implication of that means. We have 32 teeth in our mouth, including the wisdom teeth. That means every other tooth has a filling in it.
My goal is to give you information to help support the health of your teeth and gums so that you don’t have to have any fillings. I want you to maintain optimal dental health. Recently the connection between dental health and the health of your body has become increasingly more relevant. Dental health is important because it is a gateway to the rest of your body.


Silver fillings contain 50% mercury. Mercury is a neurotoxin that is constantly released from amalgam fillings as an invisible vapor at room temperature. If mercury vapor is inhaled it can be absorbed and retained in your bloodstream. Mercury is the most toxic, non-radioactive element on the earth. No amount of exposure can be considered harmless. The damaging effects of mercury may not be seen for years, but even low levels of mercury exposure can result in adverse health effects. Although some countries have banned or limited dental mercury amalgams, it is still being used for about 45% of restorations worldwide. Drilling out amalgam fillings releases even higher quantities of mercy vapor with the potential of being inhaled. Not only is this harmful to you as the patient, but it also puts the dentist, dental workers, and fetuses at risk.


The American Dental Association still supports placing mercury fillings. This is not acceptable anymore. The dental industry has made great advances in dental materials, we have better choices today than we have ever had. For the last 20 years I have only placed composite or ceramic restorations. They are superior restorations to amalgam fillings and oh by the way they help restore your teeth to their natural state.