Mercury – Physical or Chemical Change?

It’s possible that you may have heard of mercury poisoning before. Often times people associate mercury poisoning with either mercury in a thermometer or mercury that bio-accumulates in fish. The source of mercury in fish is methyl mercury. Mercury has also been used in a variety of products throughout our history, including dental fillings.

Some fish are found to have very high levels of methyl mercury in their system:

Read the mercury guide article about the different sources of mercury poisoning. It is also available in Spanish. 

What happens when mercury is consumed?

Physical changes are changes that alters a substance without changing its composition.

Chemical changes is a process where one or more substances change into a new substance, which will have different compositions and different properties.

Based on these two readings and the definitions above, would you suspect mercury poisoning in humans to be the result of a physical or chemical change?

What are some of the side effects of mercury poisoning?




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