NO says Elizabeth McDonagh, spokeswoman for the National Pure Water Association
FLUORIDE is not an essential nutrient. If we do not need to ingest fluoride, there is absolutely no reason to add it to our water supplies.
The toxicity of fluoride compounds lies between that of lead and arsenic.
Earlier this year a review of developmental neurotoxins in The Lancet Neurology identified fluoride as one of a number of chemicals that could cause developmental disabilities.
Fluoride’s toxicity and the fact it’s not an essential nutrient probably explains why its level in human breast milk is extremely low.
This means that a baby drinking formula feed reconstituted with fluoridated water will be drinking up to 200 times more fluoride than a breast-fed baby, significantly increasing the risk of dental fluorosis later in childhood.
Dental fluorosis is a manifestation of systemic fluoride toxicity and results in permanent mottling and discolouring of teeth.
A 2010 Fluoride Journal paper showed that 25 per cent of us in the UK are already getting more fluoride (from all sources) than is safe.
This figure rises to 67 per cent in fluoridated areas.
Fluoridation proponents have never shown that those at high risk of developing tooth decay in a community are receiving less fluoride compared to those at lower risk.
The authors of a 2009 Journal of Public Health Dentistry study considered the ‘optimal’ fluoride intake using dental fluorosis and dental caries outcomes.
They stated: “These findings suggest that achieving a caries-free status may have relatively little to do with fluoride intake, while fluorosis is clearly more dependent on fluoride intake.”
Despite fluoridation having started in 1945, nearly 70 years later there is not one high-quality scientific study that shows the addition of fluoridation chemicals to water supplies to be effective in reducing tooth decay.
A high-quality scientific study would be an individual, randomised controlled trial (RCT) using coded bottled water.
A call for just this type of study came in a recent letter to the British Dental Journal.
The authors refute an earlier claim in the journal that Hospital Episode Statistics-reported rates of extraction under general anaesthesia are a useful indicator of the efficacy of fluoridation.
The Department of Health presents the addition of fluoridation chemicals to water supplies as having the properties to prevent tooth decay, which fulfils the European Union’s definition of a medicinal product for human use – “any substance or combination of substances presented as having properties for treating or preventing disease in human beings” – Directive 2004/27/EC.
Water companies which administer industrial grade fluorosilicic acid to their customers are, in effect, medicating them without their individual, informed consent.
The National Pure Water Association is pleased to note that in his report to Oxfordshire County Council’s joint health overview and scrutiny committee, the Director of Public Health does not recommend fluoridation.
He outlines existing measures targeting resources towards those at high risk of tooth decay.