Quintessence Int 32 (2001), No. 9 1. Oct. 2001
Mercury-containing amalgam restorative material has come under attack for its alleged harmful effects on systemic health. A literature search revealed that amalgam restorations release small quantities of mercury but apparently not enough to cause systemic health problems. Mercury from dental amalgam restorations cannot be linked to kidney damage, Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, other central nervous system diseases, amalgam disease, mental disorders, damage to the immune system, increases in antibiotic resistance, or harmful reproductive effects. Dentists occupationally exposed to mercury have not been shown to suffer harmful reproductive or other systemic health effects, provided proper mercury hygiene is used. There are legitimate health concerns about alternative restorative materials, including resin composite. According to the latest scientific information available, dental amalgam remains a safe and effective restorative material.