Amalgam shows up in all sorts of places in a dental office. For example, there’s clean scrap amalgam that’s left over from a dental procedure and there’s contact amalgam that has been in contact with a patients, such as extracted teeth or amalgam captured in a chairside trap. And then there’s amalgam sludge, which is a mixture of liquid and solid material collected from vacuum pump filters. And, finally, empty amalgam capsules.
Dental practices don’t want to send any of this amalgam into the environment, so the best bet is to follow Best Management Practices established by the American Dental Association:
- Use chair side traps
- Install amalgam separators compliant with ISO 111432
- Use vacuum collection
- Inspect and clean traps
- Collect and recycle amalgam
When you’re collecting amalgam for recycling, work with a company like HealthFirst, which offers Amalgam Waste Recovery, which includes Amalgam Waste Recovery Buckets and collection services. You simply fill the buckets and then call for pick-up. HealthFirst takes it from there, ensuring proper recycling of your amalgam waste. And through their OnTraq Compliance Manager, you can monitor your recovery efforts to ensure you always stay in compliance with best practices and regulations.