NO FEWER CAVITIES
WITH FLUORIDE WATER
Over 50 years ago, children in Newburgh and Kingston, New York became part of an experiment to see if artificial water fluoridation reduces tooth decay. Early research reported that fluoridated Newburgh's children had 70% less cavities than children from Kingston whose water supplies never had fluoride added. Two subsequent studies reported the gap narrowing. But now Newburgh's children have no less tooth decay but more dental fluorosis (Mite spotted or discolored teeth) than Kingston's children, according to a recent New York State Department of Health study published in the New York State Dental Journal (2/98).
"While fluoridation was the main source of fluoride in the 1950's, fluoride is available from many sources today," report the study's authors, dentists Kumar and Green. Besides dental products, 'fruit juices, carbonated beverages, infant formulas, certain cereals are also known to contain significant amounts of fluoride and may contribute to the total intake of fluoride," they report. Children risk dental fluorosis without additional decay prevention when "optimal" fluoride levels are exceeded, report Kumar and Green.
In 1950, drinking water fluoridated 1 part per million delivered 1 milligram fluoride per every quart of water consumed. It was the dosage physicians determined would reduce children's tooth decay without objectionable dental fluorosis. However, that was during a time when most children's diets had negligible fluoride levels. Recent studies reveal alarming increases in dental fluorosis.
As a result, the Food and Drug Administration advises parents, on fluoridated toothpaste packages, to watch their young children brush with just a pea-sized amount of fluoridated toothpaste and to make sure they don't swallow any. The American Dental Association also reminds parents no fluoride supplement is recommended for infants under six months, or if the drinking water is fluoridated at a concentration greater than 0.7 parts per million.
To reduce dental fluorosis further, Kumar and Green instruct dentists and physicians to prescribe fluoride therapy based upon patients' total fluoride exposure. "How can anyone calculate a child's total fluoride exposure," asks Paul Beeber, President and Counsel to the New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation. "Unfortunately, food and beverage manufacturers aren't required to identify fluoride content, and fluoride containing pesticide residues & industrial air emissions also add to the toxic fluoride burden," says Beeber.
"Fluoride is out of control - whether it prevents cavities or not," says Beeber. Water fluoridation must be stopped or rejected everywhere like we have done on Long Island, New York, with the help of our legislators," says Beeber. "Children's fluoride exposure should be controlled like all prescription drugs and monitored for side effects like any other drug." The only way to remove embarrassing fluorosis stains is through bonding, capping or other expensive dental procedures that usually aren't covered by insurance.
Baby Foods Too High in Fluoride
Some baby foods contain such high levels of fluoride that babies, who eat the food, risk dental fluorosis (white flecks, brown or yellow irreversibly stained permanentteeth, according to the Journal of the American Dental Association (Heilman, et al., July 1997)
The authors conclude, "Any infants who regularly eat more than a couple of ounces of infant foods containing high-fluoride-content chicken would be at elevatedfluorosis risk." Infants who eat large quantities of dry infant cereals reconstituted with fluoridated water could ingest substantial quantities of fluoride from this source,this study shows "Children should also be monitored to make sure that they do not ingest too much fluoride from other sources such as fluoride dentifrice, dietary fluoridesupplements or fluoridated water...."
"Fluoride consumption in the United States is out of control. Our children are paying the price with smiles that embarrass them," said lawyer Paul Beeber, President ofthe New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation. "Organized dentistry has lobbied for fluoride, unchallenged, for years. Now we have a glut of fluoride in ourwater, foods, and beverages, along with fluoridated dental products," said Beeber.
One ppm (part per million) fluoride is added to over half of US water supplies (approximately 1 milligram per quart of fluoridated water), the amount dentists claim asoptimal to prevent tooth decay without causing unsightly dental fluorosis. However, "The actual 'optimal' fluoride intake has not been determined," according to thisstudy.
"Chicken is processed using a mechanical deboning method that can leave skin and residual bone particles in the food." (Chicken skin has been found to contain about 1ppm fluoride, according to the study.) Fluoride stores in animals' bones and teeth.
The FDA now requires fluoride toothpaste to carry a warning label: "WARNINGS: Keep out of the reach of children under six years of age. If you accidentally swallowmore than used for brushing, seek professional help or contact a poison control center immediately."
"What is the recommended daily dose of fluoride from all sources? Where does it come from? In what amounts?" asked Beeber. "These are the questions the mediashould be asking."
Note: The information on this website is not a substitute for diagnosis and treatment by a qualified, licensed professional.
Written by: New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, Inc.
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