Tuesday, January 31, 2017

ADA Supports New EPA Rules on Amalgam Disposal

A dental surgeon with I Smile Spa, Dr. Mickel Malek serves patients by providing them with advanced restorative dentistry services in Northern California. In conjunction with his day-to-day practice, Dr. Mickel Malek is a member of the American Dental Association.

The American Dental Association (ADA) recently voiced its support of new regulations put in place by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding the safe handling and disposal of dental amalgam. The EPA released the new regulatory guideline last December, which calls for dental practices to capture dental amalgam waste through a piece of equipment designed to separate it from other waste products. 

Dental amalgam is a filling material that is made up of several different types of metal, including copper, mercury, tin, and sometimes silver. The mercury content of amalgam accounts for less than 1 percent of the total mercury introduced into the world’s ecosystems, but the ADA and the EPA have said they still feel a responsibility to make sure these metals are handled and disposed of in a manner that’s safe for the environment.

The ADA also praised the rule because it provides a uniform guideline for dentists across the nation, rather than the sometimes confusing framework of rules that can differ between different state and local governments.

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