There has recently been a surge of fluoride detractors, and they have painted a gloomy picture regarding the effects of fluoride in drinking water. But is this really an issue — or is it just ridiculous fear propaganda? Coloradowaterfluoridation.org tells us.
What is fluoride?
Fluoride is a compound of fluorine and additional minerals. It can be found naturally in water, soil, and food. Fluoride was found to prevent tooth decay by inhibiting acid-producing bacteria in the mouth, while also enhancing remineralization which promotes enamel repair. Adding fluoride to drinking water has been ongoing since the mid-40s and became prevalent in the 50s.
Is it dangerous?
Yes and no. As an additive to drinking water at the levels you usually consume — fluoride is safe. Fluoride — such as chlorine — becomes dangerous when inhaled as a gas or when imbibed at high concentrations.
Most of the dangers associated with fluoride came from inhalation and not drinking. Credible reports about dangerous amounts of fluoride in the water will probably come from India, where surprisingly, fluoride in deep wells and naturally occurring water was the culprit and not municipal water.
How long has it been around?
Fluoride has been around for 70 years — helping generation to generation preserve and protect their teeth. Several scientific and medical studies have already been done to assess its safety.
Sources that proclaim the dangers of fluoride will cite research with vague and conflicting results — sometimes even misinterpreting the research author’s words. Every major health organization can attest to the safety of the properly fluoridated water.
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) considers the fluoride in your tap water safe and even lists it as one of the top 10 health achievements in the 20th century.
Your water is safe to drink; 70 years is a long time to research the safety of fluoride — and no ill effects have been substantially proven. What is proven, is that fluoride can help keep dental problems related to cavities at bay.