Event Title

Environmental Pollution from Waste of Dental Amalgam Material

Session

Agriculture, Food Science and Technology

Description

Amalgam is the main material used in the dental filling. It consists of mercury, silver, tin, and copper. Approximately 50% of amalgam is mercury by weight, a toxic substance that represents a global threat to human and environmental health. Due to neurotoxic effect of mercury on children, some EU countries have banned the use of amalgam in children and pregnant women. In Republic of Kosova over 80% of dentists use amalgam as the main dental filling especially in children and elderly people.

Based on our research, dental waste management does not function properly and there is a lack of best management practices in regard to handling and disposing of amalgam as hazardous wastes by dental clinics and laboratories. In most cases, amalgam wastes are thrown into the regular trash, discharged in public sewer or mixed along with other biomedical wastes destined for incineration. An ISO 11143 certified amalgam separator system that ensures efficient separation of mercury amalgam waste is far from practicing.

Toxic chemicals released by dental clinics may be minimal but their continuous discharge in nature lead to elevation, persistence and bioaccumulation of toxic heavy metals causing a serious menace to environmental health. Our first assessment provided important information on making a national plan that stipulates adequate management from handling to the disposing of mercury hazardous waste in a qualified landfill. Without clear regulation and enforcement, reducing the potential effects of environmental contamination will not happen.

Keywords:

Environment, pollution, mercury, toxicity, dental amalgam

Session Chair

Flutura Ajazi

Session Co-Chair

Imri Demelezi

Proceedings Editor

Edmond Hajrizi

ISBN

978-9951-550-19-2

Location

Pristina, Kosovo

Start Date

26-10-2019 3:30 PM

End Date

26-10-2019 5:00 PM

DOI

10.33107/ubt-ic.2019.423

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Oct 26th, 3:30 PM Oct 26th, 5:00 PM

Environmental Pollution from Waste of Dental Amalgam Material

Pristina, Kosovo

Amalgam is the main material used in the dental filling. It consists of mercury, silver, tin, and copper. Approximately 50% of amalgam is mercury by weight, a toxic substance that represents a global threat to human and environmental health. Due to neurotoxic effect of mercury on children, some EU countries have banned the use of amalgam in children and pregnant women. In Republic of Kosova over 80% of dentists use amalgam as the main dental filling especially in children and elderly people.

Based on our research, dental waste management does not function properly and there is a lack of best management practices in regard to handling and disposing of amalgam as hazardous wastes by dental clinics and laboratories. In most cases, amalgam wastes are thrown into the regular trash, discharged in public sewer or mixed along with other biomedical wastes destined for incineration. An ISO 11143 certified amalgam separator system that ensures efficient separation of mercury amalgam waste is far from practicing.

Toxic chemicals released by dental clinics may be minimal but their continuous discharge in nature lead to elevation, persistence and bioaccumulation of toxic heavy metals causing a serious menace to environmental health. Our first assessment provided important information on making a national plan that stipulates adequate management from handling to the disposing of mercury hazardous waste in a qualified landfill. Without clear regulation and enforcement, reducing the potential effects of environmental contamination will not happen.