A widely read “quackbuster” blog claims that the “Smoking Teeth” video shows water vapor instead of mercury coming off the amalgam filling.  Drs. Vimy, Haley, Eichman, and Kennedy explain why that’s all wet!


Quackbuster’s Analysis of “Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas” Video
Fails Scientific Scrutiny


M.J. Vimy, DDS, B.E. Haley, PhD, R. Eichman, DDS and D.C. Kennedy, DDS (2006)

James Laidler, MD’s criticism, Response to: “Smoking Teeth” – the truth gets “smoked out”, which appears in a widely read “quackbuster” blog, is not consistent with the laws of physics and chemistry. First, he contends that what is actually being seen is water vapor instead of mercury vapor; and second, since mercury is heavier than the constituents of air (i.e. oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, etc) the mercury vapor could not rise, but would fall toward the floor. This analysis is wrong for the following reasons.

First, the mercury vapor in the “Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas” video appears by the principle of atomic absorption spectrophotometry (AAS). AAS is a well substantiated scientific analytical technique used to measure a wide range of elements in various materials such as metals, pottery and glass. It is based on the simple fact that some elements in the Periodic Table absorb specific wavelengths of light. This constitutes that material’s fingerprint. In the case of mercury vapor the absorbtion wavelength is 253.7nm.

Thus, when a pure material is vaporized by the application of heat, and specific wavelengths of light are sequentially shone at it, the wavelength absorbed tells an investigator the element making up the sample. In it simplest form, miners employ this principle when searching for gold. In the natural state, gold has a very high affinity for mercury. The miner heats his ore sample in a dark container, while shining an ultraviolet light. If a vaporizing shadow is cast, then mercury is present and the sample likely contains gold. The amount of light absorbed is proportional to the concentration of the mercury.

The video “Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas” is simply an application of this Miner’s Test, using an amalgam filling, containing approximately 50% mercury, as the sample. Water vapor absorbs very little light at 254 nm, contrary to Dr. Laidler’s statements, and will not cast a shadow under the Miner’s Light (see figure below). Therefore, Dr. Laidler’s suggestion is unfounded. In the video, the vaporizing shadow is caused by mercury atoms absorbing the wavelength from the Miner’s Light, scientifically designed to identify the presence of mercury, not water.

Secondly, Dr. Laidler is correct when he states, “When molecules vaporize, the volume they fill depends on the number of molecules and their temperature”. This is called the partial pressure and the partial pressure for mercury in air is 0.00185 mm at 25° C. However, Dr. Laidler fails to report that the vapor pressure of mercury doubles for every 100 C increase in temperature. Employing dubious calculations, Dr. Laidler concludes that because mercury is heavier than the other components of air, if what we saw was actually mercury vapor coming off those teeth, and not just water vapor, it should have been SINKING rather than rising – even at 37° degrees C.” This of course is false, since the mercury in the amalgam is being is heated, causing the mercury molecules to become more active and vaporize. Thus, the mercury vapor rises from the amalgam and spreads into the environment in accordance with Boyles Law of Gases, the Guy-Lussac Law, and Avogadro’s Law and the Law of Entropy. These laws indicate that gas molecules by nature law move away from each other. Therefore, concentrated mercury atoms near the tooth naturally move to a location where less mercury atoms reside. These laws of the behavior of gas have nothing to do with gravity as Dr. Laidler improperly assumes.

In conclusion, Dr. Laidler reports that “ever since (he) saw the video, (he) felt that there was something wrong with it.” Indeed, he is absolutely correct! It is wrong to place materials containing 50% poisonous elemental mercury into humans, while calling them “silver” fillings. It is wrong to promote such materials as safe, when there is no level of mercury exposure considered to be “safe”.

Dr. Laidler has tried to “Manufacture Uncertainty” where none actually exists.
Figure: The absorption spectrum of water; 254 nm is near the wavelength at which water is most transparent.


The dramatic video titled Smoking Teeth = Poison Gas has had a tremendous impact on both the public and professional audiences.  You can watch the 30 minute full length version on YouTube athttps://youtu.be/GXB2AzqCjTE, including interviews with experts in the fields of mercury toxicology, environmental medicine, politics and dentistry. It is available on DVD from www.IAOMT.org. See the Store link on the home page, or e-mail us at [email protected] to order your personal copy today.