2013-01-27 The New International Treaty on Mercury! – – letter to President of University re mercury fillings (Dental College)
The Treaty on mercury signed this month is important.
But it’s not much good if few people know about it.
The Dental Colleges across Canada must stop teaching that putting mercury into people’s mouths is defensible.
I sent the following to President Busch-Vishniac at the University of Saskatchewan. I am hoping that others of you will challenge your Universities.
Or, please help raise awareness by alerting someone who is not in our networks. Persons who work in dental offices have a particular need-to-know, also.
Appreciation to Elaine Hughes for the appended links to news reports in the wake of the international mercury treaty.
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SENT: Sun 27/01/2013 12:04 PM
Dear President Ilene Busch-Vishniac,
Of particular interest to the University, from the 5th and final round of U.N. negotiations on mercury reduction:
- Phased-in cessation of the use of dental amalgam (50% mercury) (which the Dental College still teaches).
FYI: the clause about dental amalgam in the Treaty, and 3 different news reports are posted at: 2013-01-21 U.N. clinches global deal on cutting mercury emissions, Reuters (Scroll down past the page headings.)
There is no reason why there cannot be an immediate cessation to the placement of mercury into people’s mouths. There should be. And it is going to happen, anyway. It is a humanitarian move.
I am drawing this to your attention:
- Persons such as yourself sometimes think that dental colleges have stopped the use and teaching of mercury fillings (“dental amalgam”).
- Most children of people of means (like yours) will have cosmetically-attractive “white” fillings. Most First Nations and poor children will have “silver” (mercury) fillings. The cost advantage of the latter is negligible and if you factor in the eventual health costs that are handed to the public purse to pay, the composite fillings are definitely LESS expensive.
- Past efforts to engage the Colleges of Dentistry, Medicine and Toxicology in an information exchange on mercury fillings (e.g. individual invitations to the “Mercury Jamboree” held at the University in March 2012) have not been fruitful.
- The Colleges stick to the status quo arguments that have been soundly refuted or involve people and organizations (sources) who are in a conflict-of-interest, see the appended excerpt from the Star Phoenix.
- There are better, less harmful alternatives than amalgam. The University of Calgary and other institutions have documented the off-gassing of mercury in the mouth from dental amalgam. The toxicity of mercury is known; it’s not like we live in the Middle Ages. An example of the conflicts-of-interest: Canada’s Chief Dentist has the gall to simultaneously represent the amalgam industry, as well as the public interest (to quote him as an authority on “safe amalgam” is unacceptable).
- A number of European countries have banned dental amalgam.
- And now this international treaty is, fortunately, a move in the right direction.
- The networks of people who have suffered serious health problems because of insidious slow mercury poisoning share information. When dentists continue to place mercury fillings in mouths, when the University continues to teach the use of these fillings, all it does is to discredit the dental profession – – people become aware of what “dental amalgam” actually is and they then tend to become angry. It’s a “no-brainer” that you would not put mercury in your mouth.
- The University is betraying the students of dentistry, and the patients who come to the Dental Clinic. They trust “doctors” and their professors.
- Medical doctors most often do not diagnose mercury poisoning, and certainly not mercury poisoning from dental amalgam.
If you have any doubt about poisoning by dental amalgam, thumbnails of various information postings are generated by clicking on Mercury poisoning, dental amalgams. There is a cluster of scientific information around 2010. Since then the postings are mostly about stopping the use of mercury fillings. (Scroll down past the page headings. Click on the heading of any posting if you wish to read more than the thumb nail, and note that links work only if you are in the actual posting.)
I will be forwarding the news of the mercury treaty to Idle No More. Mercury poisoning is a serious issue for First Nations health. And also, Idle No More recognizes that we must stop the poisoning of the environment. Mercury fillings mean large amounts of mercury going into our water supplies, in spite of “encouragement” for practitioners to separate out the contaminated water. (And where does the contaminated water go? Mercury is an element. It doesn’t break down.)
I believe the world can be a better place for everyone, when we all pitch in where we can. I do not know if you might play a role in helping the College of Dentistry to stop the use of mercury fillings. All that is required is an open-minded assessment by the instructors of the available science.
There would not be a U.N. Treaty on stopping the use of products that contain mercury if there were not solid scientific grounds.
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STAR PHOENIX ARTICLE, DEAN OF DENTISTRY, U OF S, RE: DENTAL AMALGAM, March 29, 2012 (http://sandrafinley.ca/?p=4872 )
Dr. Gerry Uswak, dean of the college of dentistry at the University of Saskatchewan and president of the Canadian Association of Public Health Dentistry said the profession here still supports the use of amalgam.
“The evidence we find credible in the literature suggests dental amalgam is still a viable restorative material and should not be banned,” he said.
“We defer to the expertise at the national level, the Canadian Dental Association (CDA) and Health Canada and the chief dental officer of Canada. Through a variety of processes they put together expert panels and make recommendations,” he said.
“Amalgam continues to demonstrate clear advantages in many applications over other restorative materials especially in relation to the average duration of restorations,” the CDA says in a position paper.
“Although amalgam fillings release minute amounts of mercury vapour, current scientific consensus supports the position that amalgam does not contribute to illness,” the paper says.
“There are no data to suggest the removal of amalgam restorations should be performed in an attempt to treat patients with non-specific chronic complaints,” it says.
(deleted – copy of email exchange with the University in March, drawing the International Negotiations to the attention of Deans of Colleges, Dentistry, Medicine, Toxicology and Environment)
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Appreciation to Elaine Hughes for these links to news reports in the wake of the international Treaty on mercury
Nations agree on legally binding mercury rules. More than 140 countries have agreed on a set of legally binding measures to curb mercury pollution, at UN talks. Delegates in Geneva approved measures to control the use of the highly toxic metal in order to reduce the amount of mercury released into the environment. BBC http://bbc.in/13P5CyR
Still searching for answers. Discarded batteries and mercury-based products routinely find their way into waste treatment plants despite their toxic content, but authorities are yet to wake up to the lurking dangers to human life and the environment. Times of India, India. http://bit.ly/YgD6pz
Port Botany mercury fears. The chemical company Orica, responsible for a string of toxic leaks across the state, is being accused of covering up the extent of mercury contamination around its Port Botany site, potentially risking the health of thousands of residents. Sydney Morning Herald, Australia. [Registration Required] http://bit.ly/VdzBf4
Sydney residents fear Orica contamination. Worried residents want the NSW government to test soil around a southern Sydney Orica chemical plant for mercury contamination, saying they don’t trust the company’s assurances the area is safe. Australian Associated Press http://bit.ly/UbiBHi
Mercury emissions threaten ocean, lake food webs. As United Nations delegates end their mercury treaty talks today, scientists warn that ongoing emissions are more of a threat to food webs than the mercury already in the environment. At the same time, climate change is likely to alter food webs and patterns of mercury transport in places such as the Arctic, which will further complicate efforts to keep the contaminant out of people and their food. Environmental Health News http://bit.ly/WM8tBX
Rich countries reluctant to help finance mercury treaty: UN officials. Crisis-weary developed countries’ reluctance to help finance a ground-breaking international treaty to rein in the use of health-hazardous mercury is threatening the accord, UN officials warned Thursday. Agence France-Presse http://f24.my/WaCUlH
Treaty on mercury would not affect vaccines with thimerosal. A global treaty to reduce toxic mercury in the environment has been completed. However, the omission of thimerosal-containing vaccines from the ban disappointed advocates who believe it plays a role in sickening some children. Washington Times, District of Columbia.