Water fluoridation is the controlled addition of fluoride to a public water supply to reduce tooth decay. Fluoridated water has fluoride at a level that is effective for preventing cavities; this can occur naturally or by adding fluoride. Fluoridated water operates on tooth surfaces: in the mouth it creates low levels of fluoride in saliva, which reduces the rate at which tooth enamel demineralizes and increases the rate at which it remineralizes in the early stages of cavities. Typically a fluoridated compound is added to drinking water, a process that in the U.S. costs an average of about $1.02 per person per year. Defluoridation is needed when the naturally occurring fluoride level exceeds recommended limits. A 1994 World Health Organization expert committee suggested a level of fluoride from 0.5 to 1.0 mg/L (milligrams per litre), depending on climate. Bottled water typically has unknown fluoride levels, and some domestic water filters remove some or all fluoride.
History of Water Fluoridation
The history of water fluoridation is be divided into three periods. The first (c. 1901–1933), was research into the cause of a form of mottled tooth enamel called the Colorado brown stain. The second (c. 1933–1945), focused on the relationship between fluoride concentrations, fluorosis, and tooth decay, and established that moderate levels of fluoride prevent cavities. The third period, from 1945 on, focused on adding fluoride to community water supplies.
Water Fluoridation Controversy
The water fluoridation controversy arises from political, moral, ethical, and safety concerns regarding the fluoridation of public water supplies. The controversy occurs mainly in English-speaking countries, as Continental Europe has ceased water fluoridation. Those opposed, argue that water fluoridation may cause serious health problems and is not effective enough to justify the costs, and has a dosage that cannot be precisely controlled. In some countries, fluoride is added to table salt. At the dosage recommended for water fluoridation, the only known adverse effect is dental fluorosis, which can alter the appearance of children’s teeth during tooth development. Dental fluorosis is cosmetic and unlikely to represent any other effect on public health. Despite opponents’ concerns, water fluoridation has been effective at reducing cavities in both children and adults. Opposition to fluoridation has existed since its initiation in the 1940s. During the 1950s and 1960s, some opponents of water fluoridation suggested that fluoridation was a communist plot to undermine public health.
Fluoridation Reduction Tips
If you are looking for ways to reduce or remove fluoide from you drinking water, we have a list of items that do not remove fluoride from your water.
These Do NOT Remove Fluoride from Water.
- Boiling Water – This will concentrate the fluoride rather than reduce it.
- Freezing Water – Freezing water does not affect the concentration of fluoride.
- Steps to Reduce Fluoride Exposure
Don’t take fluoride supplements.
Read labels on bottled beverages.
- Consider using unfluoridated toothpaste.
- Avoid drinking black or red tea.
There are many health benefits associated with chemical compounds found in tea, but this may be a beverage to avoid if you need to reduce your fluorine intake. Black and red tea come from two different types of plants, but both leaves naturally contain high amounts of fluorine.
- Be wary of tinned fish and canned food items.
Fluoride may be used as a preservative.
- Avoid black or red rock salt or items containing black or red rock salt.
- Avoid using chewing tobacco.
- Avoid long term use of medication that contains fluorine.
Certain antidepressants and medications for osteoporosis contain fluorine.
Will Remove Fluoride from Water
H2o Concepts has two options for Fluoridation filters
- Whole House Fluoride Filter
- U3 – Under Counter Filter
If you would like more information on the fluoridation filters, please give a call at 623-582-5222.