You’ve heard that mercury amalgam fillings (aka silver fillings) may be harmful to your health. So, where do you go from here?
You’ve come to the right office by choosing a SMART certified doctor to replace your old, leaky mercury amalgam fillings to reduce your mercury exposure. SMART, you ask? He better be smart, right? But, that isn’t the kind of smart we’re talking about. The Safe Mercury Amalgam Removal Technique or “SMART” was developed by the International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology (IAOMT) as a set of scientific, research-backed safety recommendations and protective measures for the removal of mercury amalgam fillings.
Simply put, having a mercury amalgam filling removed exposes you to harmful mercury vapor (yep, all amalgam fillings contain approximately 50% mercury). We’re concerned with your safety as much as we are concerned with our own, which is why we perform this procedure in a mercury-safe environment, drastically reducing BOTH our exposures to harmful substances released.
So what does the SMART Protocol literally look like?…
Use of an amalgam separator. Mercury amalgam waste is collected so that the dangerous toxins don’t enter the water supply.
High velocity air filtration. A high-volume air filter is necessary for getting rid of mercury particulate and mercury vapor, metal particulates, and bacteria from the air. This is positioned near the patient for maximum protection.
Use of protective gowns. We won’t be the only silly looking ones in the room, you’ll wear a gown too! Research has shown some particles of harmful mercury cannot be completely captured by suction and other devices, so we take additional precautions.
Nasal oxygen tubulars. So you’re constantly breathing in the good stuff instead of the bad.
Use of face masks. To protect our dental team, Dr. Kriegel and anyone else in the room at any time must wear a special mask coated with charcoal to filter mercury vapors.Use of a dental dam. Stops the mercury and toxins from being swallowed.
Use of a saliva ejector with specialized “Clean Up” suction tip. Used under the dental dam and over the treatment area in order to capture all that contaminated saliva.
Lots of water usage. Using a lot of water reduces heat and can reduce the spread of mercury vapor.
Sectioning and chunking. Rather than grinding, we remove the amalgam in chunks, again minimizing the release of mercury vapors and unnecessary removal of healthy tooth structure.
For more information about the SMART protocol, why we believe it is a standard of care, and why you should choose a SMART certified dentist, check out these websites: