Dental Materials Sensitivity Testing

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What is Amalgam?

The two fillings on the bottom left and the three on the top left will be replaced before too long.

I'm finally beginning the process of getting my amalgam fillings removed.  I've finally saved enough money to get started and I called the dentist that I will be going to and made the appointment for January 30th.  I was planning to get my cracked amalgam replaced, plus the one next to it. But then my good friend Patty from Loving Our Guts contacted me and told me she had just finished reading It's All in Your Head: The Link Between Mercury Amalgams and Illness by Dr. Hal Huggins.  She told me his advice was to try to have all amalgams removed within 21 days, if at all possible, and that I should not cross the midline.  In other words, have the fillings removed from one side first, then the other side in a subsequent appointment.

At first I freaked out a little bit, because this work is expensive. It doesn't help when I see that the cost at my traditional dentist through my employer covered insurance plan would cost me about 20% of the amount I'm paying to my biological dentist. But then I decided I was going to go for it, and I called the dentist's office to see if I could schedule to have all the fillings removed on the left side.  That was fine as long as I could come in about an hour earlier in the day.  I explained to them that historically I have trouble numbing and it often takes longer than for most people so we decided I would come in another half hour earlier.

I had ordered It's All In Your Head at Patty's suggestion and read that there are tests you should complete prior to having any work done.  One of the most important tests is the materials sensitivity testing.  I called my biological dentist to find out if he knows about this testing, and he was able to refer me to a laboratory.  At this point it became clear if I wanted to get this testing done I would need to reschedule.

I learned that this test can be ordered by an individual, or by one's dentist.  It costs $275 which includes a hard copy 50 page report sent to the dentist, and an electronic copy will be emailed directly to my inbox.  Overnight shipping through FedEx costs an additional $50, so the total I will be paying for this testing is $325.  This is less than 1/10th of the cost of the dental work, and my husband and I decided it would be best for me to make sure that the money we are investing in having my fillings replaced is at least being spent for the replacement material which is least likely to cause a reaction from my body. I understand that our body reacts to anything foreign, it's just that some things are tolerated while others can cause a problem.

Then I kind of lost steam.  That first weekend after I'd made the decision was a very stressful one for me.  Just because I was feeling scared about the dental work, because there is no telling what will happen once the dentist begins to remove and replace my fillings.  The estimate I was given strictly covers removal and replacement. I know that the teeth being worked on having some deep fillings, and could be close to the root.  So I may end having to get some teeth removed altogether, because I will not have a root canal.  The thought of having teeth removed is pretty scary to me and I don't really want to think about it too much.

In order to have the testing done I need to have blood drawn.  I have to fast at least 8 hours, preferably 10, and I have to send the blood samples by FedEx once drawn.

Tomorrow is the day I will have my blood drawn, if all goes as planned.   It takes two weeks to get back the results so I should call the dentist's office tomorrow and set my appointment.

Many mixed feelings.  In the book It's All in Your Head, Dr. Huggins said that some people's temperatures rose to normal after having the mercury removed.  I looked at the Meridian Tooth Chart and every single one of my teeth that has mercury in it is related to thyroid.

Maybe one more piece of my puzzle.  In beginning GAPS, I looked back to the years when my health changed, which I pinpoint as the time I began to gain weight.  This was after the birth of my children. I thought my chemistry changed after giving birth.  Then when I learned about gut dysbiosis I thought it must have been the four courses of antibiotics I took the year prior to conceiving my first son.

But now I'm realizing there was one more component.  In the months prior to conceiving Matthew I also had dental work done.  I do not know exactly the number, but I am pretty sure my first amalgams were in two teeth on the upper left side of my mouth when I was around the age of 16.  At that time I had a cavity in between two molars, the size of a peppercorn.  The dentist told me at that time that I had a lot of new cavities.  My diet had changed in the previous year since I was living with a foster family who ate many processed foods.  I was never able to get those teeth taken care of, until I was 22 years old.   At that time, I probably had between 7 and 9 amalgams placed in my mouth.

So… it's no wonder my chemistry changed… antibiotics, birth control pill, mercury fillings.

I apologize for not posting much of late.  I am going to try to post more, especially since I want to chronicle this process of having my amalgams replaced.  I am really hoping this will be an important step in my health journey, and I'm excited and scared all at the same time to be embarking on it.

For now, tomorrow is the first step.  Getting my blood drawn to find out if I have any sensitivity to the dental materials.

Have you gone through this process of having your amalgams removed?  Do you feel your health has improved as a result of having the mercury removed?

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10 comments to Dental Materials Sensitivity Testing

  • Starlene, please don’t worry about having a tooth pulled. I lost one and it really wasn’t a bad or difficult process. It wasn’t really any worse for me than having a filling done as far as pain and recovery. Your fillings all look to be in the back, so you have time to let it heal and find the best option for you.

    Geting my amalgams out was one of the best decisions I made. I don’t believe you’ll regret it once you come out on the other side.
    KerryAnn recently posted..Finding Common Ground- The Paleo Auto-Immune Protocol and the Low Oxalate DietMy Profile

    [Reply]

    Starlene Reply:

    Thanks for your reassurance, KerryAnn. I’m worried on a couple of levels regarding losing teeth. For one thing I know it won’t be cheap. I had called this dentist when my husband needed a tooth extracted and if I remember correctly it was going to cost $1000 or $2000 for removal, so that freaks me out. The amount I am spending on this work (5 amalgams removed is costing me $1700) is very difficult for me because I am just not comfortable spending money on myself. But I am ready to have it done and hope it will be a step forward in my health journey. I just feel it will be. Oh…. just the thought of having a big open gaping spot in my mouth, or having to wear a partial. Just not excited at the thought of that either, plus the cost for the partial. I will try not to worry! 🙂 Thanks again!

    [Reply]

  • churyl

    I’m planning on getting my amalgams removed in a month or two. Thank you for sharing your journey. I’ll be following your steps.

    [Reply]

    Starlene Reply:

    Hi Churyl, I will let you know how it all goes. I did get my blood drawn today and got it sent by FedEx and it will be at the lab tomorrow by noon. I’ve set my appointment for a couple of weeks from now. I have a lot to write about with what is coming up so I will try to keep to my promise and keep everyone updated. How many do you have to have removed? Have you read Hal Huggins book?

    [Reply]

  • Kristie

    After much thought and prayer I had my amalgams removed (only two and at the same time). I was thinking the more planning you do ahead of time the happier you will be later. Do you know all the questions to ask a dentist to make sure they are going to do it correctly? Because that is VERY important. Are you on all the supplements that you would probably want to be on to help your body be strong and ready for the replacement? (If you contact Leo Cashman at DAMS-a non profit mercury group-he will send you info on all these things.) I would also consider taking chlorella or charcoal to mop up any tiny bit of mercury after the removal. I had a vitamin C IV also right after the dental work because vitamin c neutralizes mercury. I do think replacing those fillings was an important step in healing for me. I know if I didn’t know the one true God I would have even been more scared. And it can be scary. But God had not given me the spirit of fear, but of power of love and of a sound mind. 2nd Timothy 1:6-8. If you have any other questions, I wouldn’t mind answering them. 🙂

    [Reply]

    Starlene Reply:

    Kristie, that is a scripture verse that I have repeated to myself over and again for about four decades – I remember repeating it since I was around the age of 10. So far my dentist seems to be right on with knowing all the right answers to my questions. Thanks for the recommendation to contact Mr. Cashman. I will keep you in mind in case I have questions. Thank you for letting me know how it went for you. I have so many to have removed but I am really thinking that this is going to be a step forward for my health. Best, Starlene

    [Reply]

  • churyl

    I was doing more research about this topic and came across this excellent article. Chris Kresser’s information resonates well with me. I think perhaps I will not remove my amalgams after all.

    http://thepaleohygienist.com/2012/10/03/amalgam-fillings-mercury-concerns-is-a-key-nutrient-the-answer/

    [Reply]

    Starlene Reply:

    Hi Churyl, thanks for sharing. Here’s my take… in that article, this caught my eye: “…studies have shown that when oral mercury vapor levels along with blood and urine mercury levels are compared in individuals with amalgam fillings that report negative symptoms vs. those that are symptom-free, no difference in mercury levels were found.” My question would be, if they tested these people again, the second time around knowing their MTHFR gene mutation, would the people with the gene mutation be the ones experiencing the negative symptoms? I bet they would be. Patty wrote at her blog about how mercury affects (disrupts?) the detox process. I’ll quote her: ” There is a whole cascade of substances in the body that are blocked if you can’t convert to and from methylfolate. One of the better known ones is glutathione (GSH at the bottom of the diagram). Glutathione is created in your liver and one very important thing that it does is to help to detoxify the body from heavy metals. Interestingly enough mercury breaks the next step in the metabolic pathway after the one that MTHFR break. If you are exposed to mercury and don’t make enough glutathione then your body can’t get the mercury out. That mercury impairs the process that should make more glutathione which is necessary to detoxify the body of the mercury…. It’s a vicious cycle. Amalgam fillings and vaccines are two ways that many of us have been exposed to mercury over the years. If you don’t have enough glutathione in your body that mercury that you were exposed to many years ago is still there. It can’t get out.” http://www.lovingourguts.com/mthfr-part-1-2/ I would dearly love to get out of this upcoming procedure but since most of my amalgams are over 25 years old it is probably not a bad idea to have them removed and replaced. My biological dentist will be protecting me, himself and his staff, plus draping the room to protect his office from the mercury vapors. So I think that is the biggest hurdle, finding a dentist to do the removal the proper way. I thank you for sharing this article as there may be others who will find it very helpful in their decision making process. You’ll have to keep me posted as to what you end up doing. 🙂 Warm regards, Starlene

    [Reply]

    churyl Reply:

    Ahhh I didn’t think about the MTHFR gene mutation. Thank you so much for explaining! My amalgams are over 30 years old so I may need to get mine replaced, anyway. I’ll be reading your posts with great interest.

    [Reply]

    Starlene Reply:

    Hi Churyl, so yeah… I was so happy with my traditional dentist when I first saw him years ago and he was so cool about my amalgams. I thought “Now this is a good dentist! He isn’t trying to talk me into doing unnecessary dental work!” I thought that was so great. When I started learning about the gene mutation and what Patty had written, I really started to wonder if that was going to be a big factor for me, especially since I have the most challenging combination. Wow, your fillings are old too. How many do you have?

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