Parliamentary question - E-6715/2008Parliamentary question

Mercury dental amalgams

by Kathy Sinnott (IND/DEM)
to the Commission

Mercury amalgams are commonly used by dentists in the teeth of millions of people around the world. Mercury has been well established to cause severe poisoning in humans that can lead to tremors, emotional changes (e.g., mood swings, irritability, nervousness, excessive shyness), insomnia, neuromuscular changes (such as weakness, muscle atrophy, twitching), headaches, disturbances in sensations, changes in nerve responses and performance deficits on tests of cognitive function.

It has been the position of most national health departments that mercury dental amalgams are completely safe. This last year, however, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark have banned the use of mercury dental amalgams because they now consider them dangerous toxins. Also the US Food and Drug Administration has retracted all written statements that mercury dental amalgams are safe.

What is the Commission's view on the use of mercury dental amalgams? Has there been any controversial input to the Commission about them? If the Commission does consider them to be unsafe, is there any intention to change policy?

OJ C 316, 23/12/2009