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Fluoridation

Public water fluoridation push may expose infants to dangerous levels of fluoride

Thursday, August 23, 2007 by: M. T. Whitney
Tags: fluoridation, public safety, municipal water supplies


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(NewsTarget) Plans to increase the fluoride in Southern California water systems may have negative effects on the development of infants' teeth when fed with formula. The American Dental Association has warned that increased amounts of fluoride in water systems may cause infants to grow up with teeth that appear damaged.

• The ADA states that fluoride is important, but too much can cause dental fluorosis to the enamel of infants' not-yet-developed teeth.

• Dental fluorosis affects the appearance of teeth, causing them to yellow or develop white spots. It also can cause the pitting or mottling of enamel (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tooth_enamel).

• The group recommends breastfeeding infants to keep them away from water while their teeth develop.

• If using a formula mix, the ADA recommends using low- or non-fluoridated water as the liquid mixer.

• The federal Centers for Disease Control estimate that roughly one-third of children between the ages of 12 to 15 years have some degree of fluorosis. (More information here.)

• According to the ADA, the recommended intake of fluoride for children younger than 4 years is less than 1 milligram of fluoride per day. For adults, it is 4 milligrams for men and 3 milligrams for women.

• The Southern Californian water district choosing to add fluoride supplies 18 million people with water, including an estimated 240,000 babies under the age of one.

• "It is deeply troubling that children, including bottle-fed infants, will begin drinking fluoridated water without the benefit of the ADA warning and in spite of the many [other] serious concerns [about fluoridation] raised by the National Academy of Sciences last spring," the Environmental Working Group wrote in a press release (http://foodconsumer.org/7777/8888/R_ecalls_a...).

Bottom line

Fluoride in the water affects the dental health of infants, and some municipalities might add fluoride without warning you about the risks to your child. To protect the health of your child, do not allow them to drink from municipal water supplies unless you can remove the fluoride with proper home purification or filtration.

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