Mercury: A silver metallic element that exists as a liquid at room temperature. It has the atomic symbol Hg (from hydrargyrum, liquid silver), atomic number 80, and atomic weight 200.59. Mercury is used in many industrial applications and its salts have been employed therapeutically as purgatives, antisyphilitics, disinfectants, and astringents. It can be absorbed through the skin and mucous membranes which leads to MERCURY POISONING. Because of its toxicity, the clinical use of mercury and mercurials is diminishing.Mercury PoisoningMercury Compounds: Inorganic compounds that contain mercury as an integral part of the molecule.Mercury Poisoning, Nervous System: Neurologic disorders associated with exposure to inorganic and organic forms of MERCURY. Acute intoxication may be associated with gastrointestinal disturbances, mental status changes, and PARAPARESIS. Chronic exposure to inorganic mercury usually occurs in industrial workers, and manifests as mental confusion, prominent behavioral changes (including psychosis), DYSKINESIAS, and NEURITIS. Alkyl mercury poisoning may occur through ingestion of contaminated seafood or grain, and its characteristic features include POLYNEUROPATHY; ATAXIA; vision loss; NYSTAGMUS, PATHOLOGIC; and DEAFNESS. (From Joynt, Clinical Neurology, 1997, Ch20, pp10-15)Methylmercury Compounds: Organic compounds in which mercury is attached to a methyl group.Mercury Isotopes: Stable mercury atoms that have the same atomic number as the element mercury, but differ in atomic weight. Hg-196, 198-201, and 204 are stable mercury isotopes.Dental Amalgam: An alloy used in restorative dentistry that contains mercury, silver, tin, copper, and possibly zinc.Mercuric Chloride: Mercury chloride (HgCl2). A highly toxic compound that volatizes slightly at ordinary temperature and appreciably at 100 degrees C. It is corrosive to mucous membranes and used as a topical antiseptic and disinfectant.Organomercury Compounds: Organic compounds which contain mercury as an integral part of the molecule.Unithiol: A chelating agent used as an antidote to heavy metal poisoning.Volatilization: A phase transition from liquid state to gas state, which is affected by Raoult's law. It can be accomplished by fractional distillation.Hair: A filament-like structure consisting of a shaft which projects to the surface of the SKIN from a root which is softer than the shaft and lodges in the cavity of a HAIR FOLLICLE. It is found on most surfaces of the body.Mercury Radioisotopes: Unstable isotopes of mercury that decay or disintegrate emitting radiation. Hg atoms with atomic weights 185-195, 197, 203, 205, and 206 are radioactive mercury isotopes.Food Contamination: The presence in food of harmful, unpalatable, or otherwise objectionable foreign substances, e.g. chemicals, microorganisms or diluents, before, during, or after processing or storage.Seafood: Marine fish and shellfish used as food or suitable for food. (Webster, 3d ed) SHELLFISH and FISH PRODUCTS are more specific types of SEAFOOD.Water Pollutants, Chemical: Chemical compounds which pollute the water of rivers, streams, lakes, the sea, reservoirs, or other bodies of water.Ethylmercury Compounds: Organic mercury compounds in which the mercury is attached to an ethyl group.Dental Staff: Personnel who provide dental service to patients in an organized facility, institution or agency.Fishes: A group of cold-blooded, aquatic vertebrates having gills, fins, a cartilaginous or bony endoskeleton, and elongated bodies covered with scales.Thimerosal: An ethylmercury-sulfidobenzoate that has been used as a preservative in VACCINES; ANTIVENINS; and OINTMENTS. It was formerly used as a topical antiseptic. It degrades to ethylmercury and thiosalicylate.Environmental Pollutants: Substances or energies, for example heat or light, which when introduced into the air, water, or land threaten life or health of individuals or ECOSYSTEMS.Spectrophotometry, Atomic: Spectrophotometric techniques by which the absorption or emmision spectra of radiation from atoms are produced and analyzed.Environmental Monitoring: The monitoring of the level of toxins, chemical pollutants, microbial contaminants, or other harmful substances in the environment (soil, air, and water), workplace, or in the bodies of people and animals present in that environment.MiningEnvironmental Exposure: The exposure to potentially harmful chemical, physical, or biological agents in the environment or to environmental factors that may include ionizing radiation, pathogenic organisms, or toxic chemicals.Metals, Heavy: Metals with high specific gravity, typically larger than 5. They have complex spectra, form colored salts and double salts, have a low electrode potential, are mainly amphoteric, yield weak bases and weak acids, and are oxidizing or reducing agents (From Grant & Hackh's Chemical Dictionary, 5th ed)Succimer: A mercaptodicarboxylic acid used as an antidote to heavy metal poisoning because it forms strong chelates with them.Environmental Pollution: Contamination of the air, bodies of water, or land with substances that are harmful to human health and the environment.Dental Assistants: Individuals who assist the dentist or the dental hygienist.Body Burden: The total amount of a chemical, metal or radioactive substance present at any time after absorption in the body of man or animal.Chemical Industry: The aggregate enterprise of manufacturing and technically producing chemicals. (From Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 2d ed)Mercury (Planet): The first planet in order from the sun. It has no known natural satellites. It is one of the four inner or terrestrial planets of the solar system.Cadmium: An element with atomic symbol Cd, atomic number 48, and atomic weight 114. It is a metal and ingestion will lead to CADMIUM POISONING.Lead: A soft, grayish metal with poisonous salts; atomic number 82, atomic weight 207.19, symbol Pb. (Dorland, 28th)Ceremonial Behavior: A series of actions, sometimes symbolic actions which may be associated with a behavior pattern, and are often indispensable to its performance.Dentists: Individuals licensed to practice DENTISTRY.Cosmetics: Substances intended to be applied to the human body for cleansing, beautifying, promoting attractiveness, or altering the appearance without affecting the body's structure or functions. Included in this definition are skin creams, lotions, perfumes, lipsticks, fingernail polishes, eye and facial makeup preparations, permanent waves, hair colors, toothpastes, and deodorants, as well as any material intended for use as a component of a cosmetic product. (U.S. Food & Drug Administration Center for Food Safety & Applied Nutrition Office of Cosmetics Fact Sheet (web page) Feb 1995)Preservatives, Pharmaceutical: Substances added to pharmaceutical preparations to protect them from chemical change or microbial action. They include ANTI-BACTERIAL AGENTS and antioxidants.Sphygmomanometers: Instruments for measuring arterial blood pressure consisting of an inflatable cuff, inflating bulb, and a gauge showing the blood pressure. (Stedman, 26th ed)Phenylmercury Compounds: Organic mercury compounds in which the mercury is attached to a phenyl group. Often used as fungicides and seed treatment agents.