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Fluoridated Water Under Serious Scrutiny

August 11th, 2009 · 2 Comments

waterYou walk into a health food store and find a flyer that warns of the hazards fluoridated water. What’s this all about? Fluoride is in half of the public water in the US. It is accepted by some, including the government, that fluoride deters tooth decay, thus it is good for public health. However, a study published in 2006 in the Journal of Evidence Based Dental Practice provided these facts:

  • Fluoride does not have to be delivered in the water supply
  • Fluoride does not have to be ingested to protect teeth
  • Caries has declined at the same rate in countries with/without fluoridated water
  • The public receives fluoride from sources other than public water supply
  • Studies show that fluoride can cause a list of adverse side effects

What You Should Know
Fluorine, the ionic form of fluoride, is used in over half of the US public water supply because it is thought to reduce the potential for tooth decay. All public water supplies contain trace amounts of fluoride, and the mineral naturally occurs in soils, plants, and animals. Mammals have the highest concentration of fluoride in bones and teeth. Fluoride can build up in the body over time. Too much fluoride can cause bones and teeth to become brittle, and high levels of fluoride are considered poisonous.

Studies and Politics

  • In the early 1900s, studies showed that teeth with fluorosis did not decay
  • First US public water supply with fluoride was in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1945
  • Some studies show fluorinated reduces cavities by 20-40% overall, but the validity of these studies is being questioned by anti-fluoride advocates
  • The positive effect of the study may be based on topical, not ingested, fluoride, as water passes over teeth before being swallowed
  • Public water was fluoridated because it is considered the most cost effective method for widespread, public distribution of fluoride
  • In 1950, Wisconsin protested fluoride and was defeated
  • In the US, water fluoridation was considered a political plot as part of the “Red Scare” in the 40s and 50s
  • The US EPA expressed concerns over fluoridated public water supply in 1985
  • In 2005, 11 EPA employee unions worked toward eliminating fluoridation in public water
  • In 1990, the National Cancer Institute conducted studies and found no evidence of cancer linked to fluoridated water
  • The EPA in California has called for a review of fluoridated water as a cancer risk

Nations that Have Fluoridated Public Water

  • Public water fluoridation is currently used in the US, UK, Ireland, Canada, and Australia
  • Sweden & Germany stopped in 1971
  • Japan stopped in 1972
  • Netherlands stopped in 1976
  • Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic, and Soviet Union stopped in 1990
  • Finland stopped in 1993

Other Resources

Wise Guy Comment from the Editor
Is the fluoride scare legitimate, or is it a ploy for bottled water companies to keep their heads above, well, water, during an economic slowdown? Sounds silly, but consider that the US is the third greatest consumer of bottled water in the world. By 2011, market forecasts show that the bottled water market in the US will be $174,286.6 million. The big soda pop companies have bottled water products for one reason – money. Bottled water does not contain fluoride, so. Badabing.

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Rex Kramer // Aug 17, 2009 at 11:34 am

    To Editor:
    Or is it even more sinister?
    Harvard Study: Strong Link Between Fluoridated Water and Bone Cancer in Boys

  • 2 Rex Kramer // Aug 17, 2009 at 11:34 am

    To Editor:
    Or is it even more sinister?
    Harvard Study: Strong Link Between Fluoridated Water and Bone Cancer in Boys

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