Heavy Metal Detoxification
Lifestyle Management for Reducing Metal Toxicity Risk
Maintain Good Occupational Hygiene
Occupational exposure can be reduced by modifying manufacturing processes to reduce worker contact with metal toxins, collecting and removing fumes, following proper hazardous waste management procedures, and substituting with safer materials/procedures when possible. In most countries, regulations limit employee exposure to toxins and establish worker and workplace health surveillance guidelines. Individuals can be proactive by learning about substances they are coming in contact with, limiting exposure by following safety procedures and wearing the required personal protective equipment, practicing proper skin and hand hygiene, and properly decontaminating before leaving the workplace (Coppotelli 2012).
Reduce General Exposure
Exposure to metal toxins can also be reduced by understanding the sources of metal exposure (see the section on risk factors) and adopting strategies to reduce contact with them. First, become familiar with symptoms of toxicity and first aid procedures for ingestion of substances containing toxic metals (Barsan 2008). Next, read product labels and know the potential hazards of products. Third, take advantage of established disposal programs and facilities for discarding metal-containing waste. Finally, avoid mercury amalgam dental fillings to reduce mercury exposure, especially when multiple fillings are needed. In one study, individuals with 7 or more mercury fillings had 30-50% higher urinary mercury levels compared to individuals without any amalgam fillings (Dutton 2013). Since studies have shown that exposure to mercury via dental amalgam fillings poses health risks (Geier 2013), removing and replacing existing dental fillings with mercury-free composite material should be considered. Individuals seeking to have their mercury amalgam fillings removed and replaced should seek out a dentist experienced in this procedure, as mercury vapor levels can rise in the surrounding environment if proper procedures are not followed during their removal, potentially exposing both the patient and dental staff to excessive mercury (Warwick 2013).