Can The Mercury In A Thermometer Kill You?

How much mercury is in a thermometer?

A typical mercury thermometer contains approximately 0.7 grams of mercury (700 milligrams), but larger thermometers can contain as much as three grams.

Both short term and long term exposure to mercury can cause serious health problems for humans and wildlife.

How toxic is mercury?.

Can you still buy a mercury thermometer?

While mercury thermometers can measure temperature within one degree Celsius, digital thermometers can be as accurate as 0.001 degrees C a difference of four orders of magnitude in accuracy. This changeover won’t be a big deal for the average person “In fact, you can’t buy [mercury thermometers] anymore,” Strouse said.

What happens if you breathe in mercury vapor?

The inhalation of mercury vapour can produce harmful effects on the nervous, digestive and immune systems, lungs and kidneys, and may be fatal. The inorganic salts of mercury are corrosive to the skin, eyes and gastrointestinal tract, and may induce kidney toxicity if ingested.

What foods are high in mercury?

Here are eight foods you should avoid to reduce your exposure to dietary mercury….Foods With MercurySwordfish. … Shark. … Tilefish. … King Mackerel. … Bigeye Tuna. … Marlin. … Orange Roughy. … Chilean Sea Bass.

Can I touch liquid mercury?

It’s never safe to touch mercury. Mercury is the only metal that is liquid at room temperature. … In its liquid metal form, mercury absorbs instantly into the skin; but it also has an extremely high vapor pressure, so an open container of mercury disperses the metal into the air.

How do you dispose of mercury thermometers?

Mercury thermometers have a distinct, grayish-silver liquid in the bulb. They must be brought to a household hazardous waste (HHW) collection center in your area. Contact your local recycling coordinator for more information.

Is the mercury in a thermometer dangerous?

The small silvery ball in a mercury thermometer can be dangerous if the glass breaks and the mercury is not cleaned up properly. The mercury will evaporate and can contaminate the surrounding air and become toxic to humans and wildlife. … There are several alternatives to mercury thermometers: digital thermometers.

What happens if mercury thermometer breaks?

Have everyone else leave the area; don’t let anyone walk through the mercury on their way out. Make sure all pets are removed from the area. Open all windows and doors to the outside; shut all doors to other parts of the house. DO NOT allow children to help you clean up the spill.

What gets rid of mercury?

The traditional treatment for mercury poisoning is to stop all exposures. In many cases, chelation therapy is also used. This involves giving a medication (the chelator) which goes into the body and grabs the metal (chelos is the Greek word for claw) then carries the metal out of the body, usually into the urine.

Does mercury vapor go away?

At air temperatures found in homes, mercury evaporates slowly. … Outdoors, mercury vapors tend to go away quickly, but indoors (particularly with windows closed), mercury vapors will accumulate in the air. People can absorb metallic mercury into their bodies when they breathe the vapors.

What foods get rid of mercury?

Foods to eatcilantro.garlic.wild blueberries.lemon water.spirulina.chlorella.barley grass juice powder.Atlantic dulse.More items…

The use of mercury is legal in certain industrial processes but is highly regulated. … Exposure to elemental mercury can damage human health because it’s toxic to the kidneys and the nervous system. In the environment, elemental mercury can be converted into methylmercury, which accumulates in the tissues of fish.

How long does a mercury thermometer take?

ORAL TEMPERATURE After shaking the mercury down, place the thermometer under the child’s tongue, with the bulb toward the back of the mouth. Tell your child to keep the lips firmly closed, but not to bite the thermometer. 3. Leave the thermometer in place for 3 minutes.