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Waste Treatment & Disposal Archived Through 2012
 FAQ - Waste Treatment & Disposal - Archived Through 2012



What is the proper protocol for disposing of amalgam? 

Waste amalgam should be collected in the dental office for recycling by a licensed recycling facility. Amalgam (not free mercury) may be stored dry. Many hazardous waste haulers also will collect recyclable materials such as amalgam, mercury, lead foil, batteries, and fluorescent light bulbs. The American Dental Association published Mercury Hygiene guidelines in the November 2003 issue of the Journal of the American Dental Association, which is available online to ADA members.(1) As always, state and local laws or ordinances should be investigated before finalizing the procedure for amalgam disposal in your office. Your state dental association (2) may have resources to provide its members with regulatory guidance and assist in pollution prevention.


(1) ADA Council on Scientific Affairs. Mercury Hygiene guidelines JADA Vol. 134, Nov. 2003 1498-99

(2) ADA. List of constituent (state) dental societies of the ADA. Available at 




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