Galvanic Testing: RITA Meter
It has been observed that symptoms related to heavy metal toxicity may be exacerbated with the disturbance of mercury amalgam and other toxic metals caused by electrical currents between dissimilar metals in the mouth, a process called oral galvanism.
There are at least five different metals inside each mercury amalgam filling (mercury, silver, copper, tin, zinc, and other trace minerals). Therefore, an electrical current will always be generated between mercury amalgam fillings because they are in constant contact with saliva.
Even higher levels of current are often found between metal crowns in direct contact with mercury amalgam fillings. There are several ways you could have more than one metal in your mouth.
A mercury-amalgam filling in one tooth and a gold inlay or crown on another.
- An old mercury-amalgam filling left underneath a metal-alloy based crown.
- Titanium implants or bridges with a metal-alloy base replacing missing teeth.
- A partial denture that has metal clasps or metal base.
- Dental work is done by more than one dentist or multiple restorations over many years.
A visible wearing sign of galvanism is electrolytic corrosion of the metals in the mouth. This “rusting” results in leaching of the heavy metal ions into the body which can cause allergic reactions or toxicity. When mercury-amalgam fillings are near gold-alloy crowns or porcelain crowns containing metal-alloys, the mercury released into the body can be as much as ten times greater when compared to mercury fillings alone. Metal-based crowns placed on titanium implants often cause oxidative pitting corrosion of the implant which can result in chronic inflammation of the gums and bone surrounding the implant.
Oral galvanism has been shown to cause irritation in the trigeminal nerve which is the main cranial nerve; blocking the flow of major acupuncture Oral galvanism has been shown to cause irritation in the trigeminal nerve which is the main cranial nerve; blocking the flow of major acupuncture meridians which can, in turn, lead to greater dysfunction throughout the body and may interfere with the healthy function of other organs on the same meridian as the restored tooth.
There are a variety of symptoms related to oral galvanism, many of which have been noted to improve when the oral galvanism is reduced. These may include: an unpleasant metallic taste, burning sensation to the tongue and usually dry mouth, headaches, migraines, dizziness, nausea, amalgam tattoos, lack of concentration and memory, insomnia, psychological problems, tinnitus, vertigo, epilepsy, hearing loss, eye problems, and others.
The RITA Meter® is used to measure galvanism or the “battery effect” created by dissimilar metals in the oral cavity. With the RITA meter, we can quantify the amount of electrical current released by every metal restoration in the mouth from the highest to lowest millivoltage. The results of this test determine the order in which your mercury-amalgam fillings and other metals should be removed, known as sequential mercury removal, which is endorsed by the Huggins-Grube Protocol.
If you have evidence of oral galvanism and/or its effects, the solution is to replace the metals in your mouth with biocompatible metal-free materials – composite or ceramic restorations, Metal-Free Dental Implants, and non-metal partials. Depending on how long you’ve been living with the effects of galvanism, additional work with an integrative physician, naturopath, and other health professionals may be needed to help bring the body back into balance.