Environmental Protection

Dentist's Video Highlights Waste Metals in Ocean

Created to promote a healthy environment as well as dental health, a new video by San Diego Holistic Dentist Carey O'Rielly DDS, has a message about green dentistry and ocean conservation.

O'Rielly's biological dentistry practice offers natural dental care in the San Diego North County beach town of Encinitas. His video emphasizes dentistry's environmental role because 14 percent of waste metals in the ocean come from dental practices, according to a press release. To see the video, visit dentistrygoesgreen.com.

At the California Dental Association's May convention in Anaheim this year, O'Rielly met with Al Dube', vice president of SolmeteX Corporation. The company provides amalgam filtration for the dental industry. According to Dube', 20 tons of heavy metals released into the environment every year come from dental offices in the United States.

Currently 10 states mandate amalgam separators, the type of filtration offered by SolmeteX, which removes mercury found in amalgam waste before it can enter the water system. The six New England states, New York, New Jersey, Oregon and most recently Michigan have made amalgam filtration mandatory. Elsewhere, amalgam filtration is voluntary.

As of September 2008, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency continues to support voluntary amalgam filtration, and the California Dental Board follows this guideline.

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