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Dental query re root canal and mercury vapors in pregnancy

8 replies

JustLikeJesseJames · 24/06/2020 19:29

Hey first time poster long time lurker here. Currently 25 weeks pregnant and have had terrible trouble with my teeth (which I know is entirely my own fault for not looking after them better). In the last 6 weeks I've had two wisdom teeth removed due to infection and need a third removed due to recurring pericoronitis. However, the main problem at the minute is pain from a 1st upper molar which was deeply filled about a year ago. Dentist has suggested root canal treatment. My worry is the possible exposure to mercury vapours when the old filling is being removed. Could anyone provide advice/reassurance please on what to do? If possible I will wait until after my DD is born but the pain is awful at times.

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whichteaareyou · 24/06/2020 19:45

I'm a dental nurse please don't worry about the Mercury. Dentists are extra extra cautious when it comes to pregnant people so i wouldn't be surprised if they wait until you have had the baby to do this- it's got nothing to do with the mercury though jsut with everything going on!

JustLikeJesseJames · 24/06/2020 20:06

Thank you for the reply whichteaareyou. My dentist is lovely but he seems rather gung ho at times, ie when I queried about using a lead apron for xrays he was quite dismissive and stated it would actually be more dangerous to wear one (something to do with scatter). He's happy enough for the root canal to be done (well the first part anyway) but got myself in a tizz after reading about the dangers of mercury vapour being released when the amalgam is removed. A lot of websites make it out to be quite dangerous, but not sure how accurate the information is or if it's more a theoretical risk.

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Myhooversucks · 24/06/2020 20:58

I’m no dental nurse and correct me if I’m wrong but during my pregnancies no dentist was allowed to touch my metal fillings nor allowed to put one in. I needed a filing and had a white one because of this. I hope my post doesn’t come across rude, I’m not meaning to. Tooth ache is the worst.

JustLikeJesseJames · 24/06/2020 21:23

Not rude at all myhooversucks! Thank you for the reply. I was surprised my dentist was so willing to do the treatment. I would much prefer to wait until DD is here, but my experience so far is that teeth rarely play ball unfortunately. Just hoping the pain goes away and I can delay treatment but I'd also be worried about the risk of abcess/untreated decay etc

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whichteaareyou · 24/06/2020 21:46

@JustLikeJesseJames he's right about the lead apron they are more dangerous and a dental X-rays dosent cause any harm whatsoever to your baby I completely understand your worry though. Also, when you have a root canal you have something on called a rubber dam on which is a sheet that covers your mouth and just shows the tooth so absolutely nothing goes down your throat- they use this because they use bleach to clean out the canals. You'll be perfectly safe!

JustLikeJesseJames · 24/06/2020 21:51

Oh that's reassuring to know about the dental dam and x rays whichtearareyou. I had never heard about the risk of scatter before, but I know nothing about dentistry. Could I just ask, is there any way to prevent inhaling the vapour also?(as opposed to swallowing the amalgam)

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CoolNoMore · 25/06/2020 06:02

@whichteaareyou is obviously the expert to listen to here, but just for reassurance - I had two amalgam fillings replaced when I was about 7 weeks. The dentist used a rubber dam, he was very confident and knowledgeable that it was perfectly safe and my midwife had no concerns whatsoever. Good luck!

JustLikeJesseJames · 25/06/2020 07:02

Thank you for the reassurance @CoolNoMore. That has helped to put my mind at rest a little. I know my dentist would never intentionally do anything risky, but have read so much conflicting advice online. I really need to step away from GoogleGrin

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