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Autism, Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Anesthesia: A Deadly Dental Combination

DentistMost of us in the biomed autism community know that our kids often can not process anesthesia like children who do not have autism.  Our kids need accommodations everywhere. Autism is a new breed of disability. Routine cleanings often require extensive behavioral training and even full sedation. Fillings? Hospital day admission.  From this I know.  My three daughters with autism have been blessed with strong teeth and a Mother whose Dad was a dentist.  They drink only water. No sugary juices or sodas. They eat no sticky snacks. "They" (I and their Dad) brush with a special three sided brush twice a day.  We've had only one cavity between them. They are 22, 20 and 16. But that cavity required a hospital day procedure admission with a full surgical team. Imagine the cost? Covered by Medicaid (for now) but still - most 12 year olds would have sat in the dental chair and gutted it out. My daughter would have had the drill through her skull... And we see a GREAT practice that uses PECS for autism and has fully welcomed the autistic. 

Below this FOX article about the death of a youngster, is a reprint of an article in Autism File Magazine by Sym Rankin, RN and autism parent about autism and anesthesia. An important article to read and share.  Autism Speaks has a dental toolkit, unfortunately it tells the dentist nothing about the differences that could make a visit a tragedy.

Mykel was given "an extra dose" of Ketamine according to this article below. HE WAS FOUR.  Read this article about Ketamine:  Oral Ketamine for the Management of Combative Autistic Adult.

To the Editor:- Anesthetic management of uncooperative patients often is difficult, particularly when they are violent or incapable of understanding instruction. These patients may be impaired because of mental or neurologic disease. One such situation is autism. Although use of oral Ketamine as a premedication is well described in children, its use in the management of violent or uncooperative adults is not. I report these two cases because of the unique situation these autistic patients presented for an anesthetic.


Our condolences to the Curry family on Mykel's death.   From Fox News:

A Washington family is seeking answers after their 4-year-old son died Friday during a seemingly routine dental procedure that reportedly involved a shot of anesthesia. Mykel Peterson, who was a patient at Must Love Kids dental practice in Vancouver, was on the autism spectrum and had trouble keeping his mouth open during appointments, KGW8 reported. 

“He wouldn’t keep his mouth open so they can actually see what’s going on,” Thmeka Curry, Mykel’s  mother, told the news outlet. 

The dental practice specializes in treating children with developmental issues and uses a board-certified anesthesiologist. Mykel reportedly was given a shot of Ketamine, a common anesthesia drug, so that he would be sedated while the dentist checked to see if he needed a filling or crown, KGW8 reported. 

“The dentist was telling me everything she did with his teeth, and she was going to check to see if he was awake yet,” Curry told KGW8. 

Curry told KATU that the anesthesiologist said Mykel was given an extra dose to ensure he did not wake during the procedure.   Read more here.

Anesthesia and the Autistic Child

By Sym C. Rankin, RN, CRNA

Sym C. Rankin, RN, CRNA, is a graduate of the University of Southwestern Louisiana and the Charity Hospital School of Nurse Anesthesia (New Orleans). As a practicing anesthetist for over 25 years, she has witnessed an alarming increase in chronic and autoimmune diseases. Those observations became less academic and more personal after her son was diagnosed with autism. Her son’s journey of recovery led to Sym’s realization that mainstream medicine is far more interested in merely treating symptoms than in asking the difficult questions of why those symptoms exist. She recently joined the practice at True Health Medical Center in Naperville, Illinois, and hopes that she can help other families on the same journey.

This article represents my educated observations as an experienced nurse anesthetist who also happens to be the mother of a child on the road to recovery from an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). I am also a practitioner taking care of autistic children, so I look at these issues from a different perspective than my peers. The following observations suggest a need to heed issues that might have an impact on the delivery of anesthesia in individual cases, and also suggest a need for rigorous study of the potential problems autistic individuals might have when undergoing anesthesia.

As a practicing anesthetist for over 25 years, I am in a position to observe trends in the patients I have helped treat. In recent years, I have seen an increase in children in the operating room for various procedures. A disproportionate number of those children have diagnosed developmental delays and behavioral problems in addition to their medical problems. There are no available statistics to quantify the numbers, but my anecdotal observations tell me that children need anesthesia in numbers that would have shocked us a decade or more ago.

The trends I have seen should come as no surprise, because autism spectrum disorders have reached epidemic numbers, and autistic children tend to have health problems. I am seeing an increase in the number of these children needing radiological procedures such as an MRI or a CT scan, as well as increasing numbers of autistic children admitted for various ENT and dental procedures.

I am not the only one who has observed these trends. Recently, my profession has begun to address the special considerations of autistic children and children with behavioral problems. They are called “difficult pediatric patients.”1 This is a new term in my profession; we didn’t need such a phrase when I started my career.

A recent educational review article2 discussed anesthetic considerations for cerebral palsy patients, based primarily on their physical problems (e.g., risk for aspiration, difficulties positioning the patient, and interactions with anti-spastic and anti-epileptic medications). Autistic children, on the other hand, were looked at from a primarily behavioral standpoint (e.g., minimizing waiting time, providing quiet areas for pre- and post-operative care, and involving parents).

The typical anesthesia provider is aware of the behavioral problems in our children and will do anything to make the anesthetic experience as smooth as possible. Most anesthesia providers will have a preoperative telephone interview to discuss our children’s needs. They will minimize waiting times, provide quiet areas, and be very open to parental involvement. But that provider might not realize that he or she needs to look at the metabolic problems in autistic children and consider how those problems might affect anesthetic choice.

Anesthesia providers generally are aware of the prevalence of diagnosed ADHD and the various drugs these children might be on. They understand that autistic children might also be on stimulant or antipsychotic drugs; therefore, they must consider specific, necessary anesthetic considerations. For example, when some of these drugs are combined with certain anesthetic drugs, an increase in central nervous system depression might result. Thus, the anesthesia provider knows to avoid or minimize use of the problematic agent. But the anesthesia provider who sees that as the only concern is missing something very important.

Many parents tell me their child was different, or that they regressed, after an anesthetic. To those of us who have taken a hard look at the biochemical problems underlying our children’s autistic manifestations, these anecdotal reports should come as no surprise. An anesthetic might represent yet another toxic insult our children experience; we must help anesthesia providers understand the physical and biomedical problems our children have, so that providers might minimize the insults. Not surprisingly, part of the problem is the mindset we see in the mainstream medical community.

Mainstream physicians generally react to the physical problems of ASD children in the way their training taught them. Clinicians prescribe drugs to manage behaviors, without looking at what might be the cause. Because most anesthesia providers are very much part of the mainstream, they see only “autistic” behaviors, and they try to compensate for those behaviors by sedating the child. Such a provider does not understand the metabolic problems underlying those behaviors. So, they will default to protocols that might include drugs that might cause further problems.

Recently published research supports the potential for problems.3 A retrospective study based on medical and school records from over 5,000 children born between 1976 and 1982 in Olmstead County, Minnesota, found that one exposure to anesthesia was not harmful. More than one, however, doubled the risk that a child would be identified as having a learning disability before the age of 19. That risk increased with a longer duration of the anesthetic. The exposures were between birth and four years of age: a very critical time of brain development.

The anesthetics primarily used in the procedures under review in the Olmsted County study were halothane and nitrous oxide. Halothane is a highly fat-soluble drug that is difficult for the liver to metabolize. Nitrous oxide can deactivate methionine synthase, which is a B12-dependent enzyme important in the methylation cycle. What we can learn from that study is that administering a fat-soluble toxin, followed by inhibition of DNA methylation, might result in “learning disabilities.” Although use of halothane and nitrous oxide is not as common as it used to be, it is not a great leap to hypothesize that use of similar chemicals and toxins might play a role in triggering or exacerbating manifestations of ASD.

All that said, anesthesia is unavoidable for children who need to undergo surgical procedures. The goal in such cases is to minimize the risk. To do that, the anesthesia provider must be made aware of the unique problems your child has.
There is no single agent to handle all three elements, so a combination of drugs must be used. The anesthesia provider titrates the drugs to effect a proper balance, taking into account the unique condition of the patient. (Indeed, because anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists are used to taking unique biochemical factors into account for each patient, you might find it easier to discuss your child’s condition with them than you have found it to be with other mainstream physicians.)

Anesthesia is generally administered through two methods: intravenous and mask induction of gas. For adult patients, an IV is started, and usually a sedative and/or narcotic is given as a premedication. Then an induction agent is given to put the patient to sleep; Propofol is often used. Then the airway is secured and an anesthetic gas is used to keep the patient asleep. Often a narcotic is added for pain relief.

Sometimes using an intravenous catheter is possible for children, but more often that access is not easily obtained and an inhalation induction is used instead. A high flow rate is used for the gas, which is delivered through a mask. After a few breaths, the child is asleep, IV access is possible, the airway is secured, and gas is used to maintain the anesthetic.

When you meet with your anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist, be prepared to discuss the methods of anesthesia delivery and the exact drugs he or she intends to use. Do not be afraid to ask questions about the nature of specific drugs and how they work in the body.

Many of the drugs used in anesthesia should be considered relatively safe. For example, Versed® (a benzodiazepine used for sedation, amnesia, and for anxiety) and fentanyl (a potent narcotic) are relatively short-acting and are not heavily metabolized.

Other drugs might present choices. Propofol, a short-acting agent, is administered intravenously; it is used for induction and also for maintenance of a general anesthetic (i.e., keeping the patient asleep). It contains soybean oil and egg phospholipid, so that fact should be considered for patients with allergies to soy or eggs. Concerns have also been raised regarding a potential for propofol to exacerbate mitochondrial disease. Unfortunately, all general anesthetics have a tendency to inhibit mitochondrial function, but the documented difficulties noted with propofol stem from long-term use in the ICU setting, exceeding the exposure most patients would encounter.4

Under most circumstances, propofol can be safely used. But if there is a concern, your provider might determine that inhalation induction is appropriate, using sevoflurane. Only two to five percent of sevoflurane is metabolized in the body, making it an excellent choice for many patients. (An older inhalant, halothane, is rarely used now because of its tendency to be challenging to metabolize.)

Sometimes the provider might want to use ketamine. It is a dissociative anesthetic; in essence, a hallucinogenic. It is usually used for sedation, especially for short procedures like changing dressings on burns. In children – especially so-called difficult pediatric patients – it might be used to make starting an IV easier. Ketamine’s advantage is that it doesn’t depress respiration as other anesthetics might. It’s also easy to use; it can be given orally, intramuscularly, or intravenously. Typical side effects, however, include open eyes, nystagmus, increased salivation, and emergence delirium. Ketamine alters the patient’s sensory perception, which raises questions about its use for these children.

Special attention must be paid to the topic of nitrous oxide (“laughing gas”). It is one of the oldest anesthetics, and is still used for sedation in dental procedures. In addition, it is used on occasion as a carrier gas with sevoflurane in mask inductions. That is, nitrous oxide is utilized for a second-gas effect to increase the concentration of another inhaled anesthetic agent, thereby allowing the patient to get to sleep faster.

In the last decade, concerns have been raised about it: inactivation of methionine synthase, increase of post-operative nausea, relatively poor amnesic properties, and even as a contribution to greenhouse gases. Because of these concerns, nitrous oxide use in the operating room has dramatically declined in recent years.

Nitrous oxide might present specific problems for autistic children with common underlying conditions; it depletes the B12/folate system and deactivates methionine synthase, which is an enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of homocysteine and methyltetrahydrofolate to methionine and tetrahydrofolate. Such a deactivation in a patient with a defect in the MTHFR (methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase) gene, which is associated with diminished enzyme activity, could result in increased homocysteine levels, increased oxidative stress, and activated NMDA glutamate receptors. All of these could contribute to inflammation; additionally, nitrous oxide also might cause hematologic problems, neuropathy, and neurotoxic effects.5

For years, the anesthetic community was told that nitrous oxide was the perfect anesthetic. Now we know better. A study published in 2003 discussed the effects of two subsequent nitrous oxide exposures, MTHFR mutation, and the fatal neurological outcome due to a methionine deficiency.6 In 2007, Dr. Victor Baum presented a paper at a pediatric anesthesiology meeting that made us all rethink using nitrous oxide as an anesthetic.7

Methylation is important for detoxification, myelin (nerve sheath) formation, neurotransmitters and DNA synthesis. How can we help the anesthetic provider understand that compromised methylation is one of the underlying problems that we see in autism? That some of our children have genetic mutations such as CBS (cystathionine beta synthase) and MTHFR, which will affect how they detoxify drugs? That our children have increased oxidative stress as well as decreased methylation? That most of our children have gut problems that interfere with the absorption of many vitamin co-factors needed for methlylation and detoxification? That many developmentally delayed children have some type of mitochondrial dysfunction that might affect the provider’s choice of an anesthetic? That many anesthetic drugs affect autonomic nervous system function and can have untoward effects in the autistic population? How can we help them realize that their choices in the operating room might have detrimental effects on our child when they return home?

Unfortunately, most anesthesia providers have not seen the published research discussing biomedical problems in the autistic population. As with other medical disciplines, parents of autistic children have difficulty with the medical-mainstream mindset when we try to explain our children’s problems to anesthesia providers. We can help educate our anesthetic providers about our children’s metabolic problems by referring them to studies, many of which are listed on the Autism Research Institute’s Web site.8

The best starting point is Dr. Martha Herbert’s well-reasoned 2005 article titled “Autism: A brain disorder or a disorder that affects the brain?”, which lays out the need to embrace a new paradigm in understanding autism.9

In addition, the 2004 article by Dr. S. Jill James and her colleagues, “Metabolic biomarkers of increased oxidative stress and impaired methylation capacity in children with autism,” explains the methylation problems in autistic individuals which can lead to increased oxidative stress.10 These pathways were considered in other neurological diseases, but never linked to autism before Dr. James’ work. This article also discusses the use of B12, folinic acid, and betaine to increase methylation and reverse the effects of oxidative stress. This is critical information for anesthesia providers.

A recent article from 2008 by Dr. Richard Deth, et al. addresses the environmental and genetic factors that can lead to autism.11 The article describes a “redox/methylation hypothesis of autism,” in which oxidative stress, initiated by environmental factors in genetically vulnerable individuals, leads to impaired methylation and neurological deficits secondary to reductions in the capacity for synchronizing neural networks. The article underscores the need to minimize the oxidative stress that can result from anesthesia. Commonly used anesthetics might contribute to the toxic load, deplete B12, and affect methylation.

Dr. Jon Poling’s paper on developmental regression and mitochondrial dysfunction in autism (published in 2006) also helps to explain the overall impact anesthetic choice might have.12 The mitochondria provide energy to our cells, and are necessary for the Kreb’s cycle, fatty acid oxidation, metabolism of amino acids, and oxidative phosphorylation. The increased risk of certain anesthetics for patients with mitochondrial problems has been widely reported in anesthesia journals, and Dr. Poling’s conclusions are easily understood.

The most important thing to discuss with your child’s anesthesia provider is detoxification pathways. Let them know that your child might have a problem with glutathione production, and have defects in the methlylation pathways. A child’s liver is not able to detox as much as an adult. The need is to “keep it simple.”

Armed with better information, the anesthesia provider should be able to understand the metabolic problems our children have; in many respects, they are the same problems we see in the increasing population of chronically ill adults.

What can you do as parent or professional to help your anesthesia provider recognize your child’s unique problems? When your child is scheduled to undergo a procedure, consider discussing the following issues during the preoperative conference:
Instead of giving three different drugs at the same time for nausea, why not simply replace fluids to prevent dehydration, which is the major cause of post-operative nausea.

A mother once asked advice about an upcoming procedure because of problems with a prior dental anesthetic, during which the child was given Versed®, ketamine, Decadron®, nitrous oxide and sevoflurane. The mother complained her son was “out of it” for two days after the procedure. We discussed the questions she should ask her anesthesia provider for the next procedure; as a result, the anesthetic was conducted with just Versed® and sevoflurane. The mother used homeopathics at home for the pain and swelling. Her child suffered no ill effects from the anesthetic.

Anesthesia can be done successfully in a very simple way. When a neurotypical child goes to the dentist, does he or she get all of the drugs that many providers seem to feel are necessary for our ASD children? That is the problem with the way children on the spectrum are treated. Too many anesthesia providers are more concerned with behavioral issues than they are with the underlying physical condition. Instead of heavily sedating autistic children, providers should consider using fewer drugs, adjusting the dosages to achieve the desired effect.
ASD children, in essence, should be approached in the same manner that an anesthesia provider approaches hepatic-and renal-impaired patients. In addition to this higher degree of respect for their medical condition, our children should be treated with respect for their emotional state – just like anyone else-- and it should be explained to them what is going to happen, because the receptive language and intelligence of most autistic children is much higher than the general public thinks.

Unfortunately, surgery is often necessary, and that involves an anesthetic to prevent the sympathetic system activation that a pain response elicits. It can be done safely by an informed anesthesia provider. As with any toxic exposure, we can limit the harm and increase detoxification pathways to encourage elimination. During administration of an anesthetic, the patient is given drugs that must be metabolized by the liver, using various enzyme systems to convert fat-soluble toxins into water-soluble substances which can be excreted in the urine or the bile. At home, you can help that process, using the same liver-detoxification protocols you might already be using.

Most anesthesiologists and nurse anesthetists want to make the anesthetic experience go as smoothly as possible. After all, it is their job to make the patient feel good.

As an anesthetic provider, I consider it part of my mission to help educate my colleagues and to help them understand that our children are sick – not just autistic. That is also my mission as a parent, as it is the mission of all parents.


1 Schure, AY. Difficult pediatric patients: Anesthetic considerations for children with behavioral problems. Current Reviews for Nurse Anesthetists, Vol. 31 (21) (Feb. 2009).

2 Ibid.

3Wilder, RT, Flick, RP, Sprung, J, et al. Early exposure to anesthesia and learning disabilities in a population-based cohort. Anesthesiology, April 2005; 110(4): 796-804.

4Morgan, P. When Propofol is problematic. Presentation at 12th annual joint winter meeting of the Society of Pediatric Anesthesia and American Academy of Pediatrics. http://www.pedsanesthesia. org/meetings/2007winter/pdfs/MorganFriday1130-1150am.pdf.

5 See Selzer, RR, Rosenblatt, DS, Laxova, R, Hogan, K. Adverse effect of nitrous oxide in a child with 5,10-methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase deficiency. New England Journal of Medicine, July 2003; 349: 45–50. Kalikiri, PC, Sachan Gajraj Singh Sachan, R. Nitrous oxide induced elevation of plasma homocysteine and methylmalonic acid levels and their clinical implications. The Internet Journal of Anesthesiology, 2004; Vol. 8 (2). Baum, VC. When nitrous oxide is no laughing matter: Nitrous oxide and pediatric anesthesia. Paediatric Anaesthesia, Sept. 2007; 17(9):824-30.

6 Selzer, et al, supra.

7 Baum, VC, supra.

8 http://www.autism.com/



About dental work for little kids. One question would be . . . why do so many young children even need "dental work" ?

Of course everyone here knows the answer.

But I've wondered for years about something from years ago. I was the young mother of 2 young children; the older one was 6. She was very proud of being allowed to (and being able to) walk up to the front of our big apartment complex, to go to the dentist. For a checkup before starting 1st grade. No problems, no fillings.

Our neighbor, a woman from Sweden, had a little daughter was also going to start 1st grade. The two little girls were good friends, so I talked with the mother sometimes. She was very distressed (of course!) her daughter's teeth seemed to be just sort of melting away.

Today I wonder . . . Sweden, no sunshine all winter long. No vitamin D, calcium in teeth not being handled correctly. But also, would they -- mother and daughter -- have been required to get a lot of vaccines, all at once? Just to enter the country.

Won't ever know the answer. But seems like it's worth asking the question . . . why would 2 little girls, same age and both apparently healthy, good parents, have such different teeth?

Han Litten


Gardasil causes cancer in the recipients !
Margaret Stanley ? care to comment ?

Maurine Meleck

thanks for this article. It is something I have been aware of for a long time with Josh and we take as many precautions as possible. I would never let Josh go under unless he's in a hospital setting. If something goes wrong hospitals are more equipped to handle such emergencies. In the past we have used Versed and propofal, but Sym's information on propofal is something to reconsider. Also some dentists are in a hurry to do procedures that aren't always necessary. For something like wisdom teeth, always get at least a second opinion.


Oh my , reading this " Autism is a new breed of disibility" makes me aware that we have been hit by an unexpected squall from the side and not even realised what's happened with it all .
available to read online
The modern Management of Mental Handicap a Manual of Practice 1980 Edited by G.B Simon
Mental Handicap Hospital on the outskirts of Glasgow with 900 beds did not have this, there may have been individual persons /patients with this very identifiable need for support but it was not there
in any noticible presentation . therefore if some say , this is because of better diagnostic techniques tell them to go whistle into the wind and get a reality check .


Dentists and doctors -- even including pediatricians -- supposedly study biochemistry at some point in their education or training.

They could, and should, know that (as stated below) NMDA receptor dysfunction is implicated as part of a 'bigger picture' regarding autism. Two abstracts below.

They could, and should, know that ketamine "has unequivocal uncompetitive inhibitory effects on N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors"

But in spite of what they could know, and definitely should know -- probably many, or most, doctors and dentists have no real idea of the biochemistry which underlies the various medications they use. Or which they prescribe, in the case of doctors.

= = = = = = = =

Curr Opin Pharmacol. 2015 Feb;20:8-13. doi: 10.1016/j.coph.2014.10.007. Epub 2015 Jan 28.
NMDA receptor dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders.
Lee EJ1, Choi SY2, Kim E3.

Abnormalities and imbalances in neuronal excitatory and inhibitory synapses have been implicated in diverse neuropsychiatric disorders including autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). Increasing evidence indicates that dysfunction of NMDA receptors (NMDARs) at excitatory synapses is associated with ASDs. In support of this, human ASD-associated genetic variations are found in genes encoding NMDAR subunits. Pharmacological enhancement or suppression of NMDAR function ameliorates ASD symptoms in humans. Animal models of ASD display bidirectional NMDAR dysfunction, and correcting this deficit rescues ASD-like behaviors. These findings suggest that deviation of NMDAR function in either direction contributes to the development of ASDs, and that correcting NMDAR dysfunction has therapeutic potential for ASDs.

= = = = = = = = = = =

J Neurosci. 2016 Nov 2;36(44):11158-11164.
Ketamine: NMDA Receptors and Beyond.
Zorumski CF1, Izumi Y2, Mennerick S2.

Human studies examining the effects of the dissociative anesthetic ketamine as a model for psychosis and as a rapidly acting antidepressant have spurred great interest in understanding ketamine's actions at molecular, cellular, and network levels. Although ketamine has unequivocal uncompetitive inhibitory effects on N-methyl-d-aspartate receptors (NMDARs) and may preferentially alter the function of NMDARs on interneurons . . . .


I find it very alarming, after reading this article, that nitrous oxide is being encouraged again as an option to use during childbirth, as it does not "block" oxytocin. Supposedly as a 50-50 ratio with oxygen? Given the rising number of children on the spectrum, and the possibility that undiagnosed autoimmune/inflammatory conditions in the pregnant mother may increase the risk of autism to begin with, who has studied whether nitrous oxide in the birthing process may or may not be another catalyst increasing the risk that the baby will suffer tremendously from vaccine adverse reactions. It certainly can't bode well for babies receiving a Hep B shot on their day of birth. Would something like NAC be advisable for the mother-to-be these days?

Hans Litten

Posted by: Wolf | March 16, 2017 at 07:38 AM

I am part of the mercury amalgam generation, we know we were duped .
We know the placing of those fillings was attempted murder .
Those mercury amalgams have caused so much death and disease .


Addison's disease
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Amylotrophic lateral sclerosis
Ankylosing spondylitis
Anorexia nervosa
Irritable bowel syndrome
Juvenile arthritis
Learning disabilities
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
Lupus erythromatosus
Autoimmune disease
Manic depression
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Multiple chemical sensitivities
Borderline personality disorder
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Parkinson's disease
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Yeast syndrome


Lisa; My son when it came time to have his wisdom teeth took out, we did the same thing.
Except my son also has epilepsy.

My daughter that has bipolar as always struggled along to be treated like normal. She had her teeth pulled out at the doctors office and like to have never woke up.

My 92 year old Dad with parkinson had a tooth removed this Feb.
We had to go to the ER that night cause he was out of his mind.
They then admitted him for a week, and when he came out, we had to rent a lift cause he could no longer walk. 6 weeks later he is still week as a kitten, we are still having to use the lift at times. .
THe numbing stuff they said cleared out really quick so that was not it. Oh, how is he clearing it out- like normal people.

Rebecca Lee

Thanks for this useful article which I will share with our support group. Fight Autism and Win Detoxing Kids Facebook group.


Thanks for quick your answer!

Here in the EU there will be a ban on mercury dental fillings in pregnant and nursing women and children below 15 years of age from 1 July 2018, http://www.eeb.org/index.cfm/library/eu-agrees-dental-amalgam-ban-in-children-pregnant-and-breastfeeding-women/

Norway got its ban in 2008 and Sweden in 2009.


Personally, our family goes for the plastic stuff they shine the ultraviolet light on to harden. We won't go to a mercury dentist.

Luckily, he's never had a cavity since he brushes and flosses carefully every day. Due to yeast concerns we avoid sugars. We also avoid fluorine and minimize x-rays.

My looming concern, and perhaps you can put me wise, is how to approach wisdom teeth ? Back in the day, I had all 4 removed in one sitting with novacaine. It was an ordeal. If you have an autistic child, how would you approach this today ? Using any anesthesia on my hyper-sensitive child scares me to death, I don't want to lose him like Mykel in Vancouver. thanks so much,

Lisa Thompson

My ASD son had his wisdom teeth removed at age 19. The oral surgeon, upon learning he was on the spectrum, refused to do the procedure under anesthesia in his office, as is routinely done for neurotypical patients. We were forced to travel to Franciscan Children's Hosptal for the procedure. The difference was a $500 deductible for day surgery, vs. no charge had it been done in office. At the time, I was angry and annoyed that my relatively high functioning son, who is cooperative and able to follow directions, was forced to go that route. However, after reading this, I realize now exactly what the oral surgeon feared, and why he insisted on a hospital environment for safety reasons.


This is so terrifying. How can the public trust? Meanwhile, the paternal order of ketamine double dosers and colleagues are campaigning to make sure that every child has a "right" to their treatment.
Visible in California as a test state out in front with SB18. No doubt in the works in other states.

Managing Editor for Wolf

Wolf, as far as I know, MEDICAID does NOT pay for composite fillings - they only pay for mercury laden "silver." Here's an article from my state - CT - KIM - Managing Editor.


Yesterday’s Hartford Courant, Connecticut’s #1 newspaper, featured an op-ed exposing yet another injustice resulting from the traditional dental industry’s obsession with mercury: the resurgence of separate but “equal” dentistry.*Authored by Hartford city councilwoman and civil rights attorney Cynthia Jennings, former Hartford health director and physician Mark Mitchell, and author and mercury-free dentist Mark Breiner, this op-ed explains why the state of Connecticut must stop mandating mercury fillings for families on Medicaid immediately.On March 1, 2015, the Connecticut Department of Social Services (DSS) handed down a new decree: “Medicaid will not pay for composite restorations in the molar teeth regardless of whether the
[dental] practice markets itself as ‘amalgam free’.” It then tells dentists, “If your office cannot provide amalgam services, please have your patients call the Connecticut Dental Health Partnership (CTDHP) (1-855-CT-DENTAL) to locate a new dental home.”With almost half of all dentists practicing mercury-free dentistry, low-income families in Connecticut now have less access to dental care than ever… and it gets worse. As the op-ed explains, “By segregating Medicaid patients from access to mercury-free dentists, DSS creates a separate-but-equal system of dentistry. As thinking Americans know, separate-but-equal was never equal in the Jim Crow days, and it is not equal today.”

As we can see in Connecticut, there is nothing equal about mercury-free composite fillings for those who can afford them… and toxic mercury fillings for everyone else.

Beyond Connecticut, state Medicaid programs are divided on whether mercury-free dentistry is allowed. On the plus side, an initiative led by Yamhill County Commissioner Mary Starrett has borne fruit: the Oregon state government has thrown in the towel on mandating mercury fillings for children on Medicaid. The reason? There are so many mercury-free dentists these days that excluding them from participating in Medicaid severely limits low-income families’ access to dental care.

Oregon’s new policy is evidence of the mercury-free dentistry movement’s extraordinary growth! But sadly, even in states where Medicaid will pay for mercury-free fillings, that policy is not well-known to dental consumers.

Like Medicaid, insurance companies fabricate barriers to mercury-free dentistry. But we are working to overcome them. Over 1,800 of you have already signed thepetition insisting that Aetna change its dental insurance plans that require policyholders to pay extra out-of-pocket for mercury-free fillings. And well over 100 health professionals (including 121 dentists) endorsed a letter urging this insurance colossus to stop favoring amalgam.

If you haven’t had a chance to sign the Aetna petition yet, now’s your chance – justclick here! If you’ve already signed, please ask your family, friends, and colleagues to sign too – here is a handy shortened link to share:http://tinyurl.com/NoMercuryAetna.

Together, we can make sure that everybody – whether on Medicaid, private insurance, or neither – has access to mercury-free dentistry!


I understand mercury (thimerosal) has been discussed a great deal in this community. Are parents opting for mercury free dental fillings or is “silver” fillings with its 50% mercury content still used in autistic children?

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