Sam Ziff & Michael F. Ziff, D.D.S.
It is apparent that more and more people in the world are becoming aware of the fact that they may be walking around with a “Toxic Time Bomb” in their mouths. We estimate that in the latter part of 1990 alone, 40 million people learned that the “silver” dental fillings in their teeth were really mercury fillings and that they were continuously being exposed to mercury vapor released from these fillings. The dental filling material in question is an amalgam of mercury and a dental alloy composed of silver, copper, zinc, etc. Throughout the 160 years of its use in dentistry, it has been referred to by the dental profession as silver, silver amalgam, or just plain amalgam but never, until very recently, as mercury dental fillings. Whatever the name, the final mixture placed in the tooth is 46-52% mercury by weight. Mercury in addition to being the main ingredient of this dental material also happens to be a poison that is more toxic than lead, arsenic or cadmium.
The reason so many people learned about the mercury/silver dental filling controversy during 1990 was simply that the media, i.e., newspaper, radio, and television, focused on the subject. The catalyst for all the media attention was two research abstracts released by the University of Calgary Medical School in Canada where extensive animal research on dental mercury is being done.