Sunday, January 23, 2005

Fluoride No Aid to Poor

An interesting article suggesting that water fluoridation has not been the preventive aid that it once thought it was:

More cavities found in poor children living in fluoridated communities

New York -- (ArriveNet - Jan 20, 2005) -- "Caries experience may be associated with income,” reports the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Low income, not fluoridation deficiency, predicts more cavities is revealed in newly-released statistics posted 10/25/04 on the CDC’s website (1).

Those states reporting third-graders cavity rates and children living below the federal poverty level indicate that poor children have more cavities – even when water is fluoridated. And, the states with the highest rates of fluoridation don’t have the lowest cavity rates.

For example, CDC statistics show that:

Despite a 60% fluoridation rate, Arkansas has the most third-graders suffering with tooth decay (72%) and the highest number of poor children (45%)

Oklahoma third-graders endure the second worst cavity rate (69%) even though 3/4 of the state is fluoridated. But 41% are poor, the second poorest state on the CDC’s list.

Similarly, 89% fluoridated South Dakota reveals the third worst decay rate (68%) where 41% are poor.

At the low end:

Massachusetts, Maine and Vermont third-graders have the least decay – 49%, 45% and 44%, respectively, and the smallest amount of poor children (26%, 32% and 31%), Fluoridation rates: 63%, 75%, and 54%, respectively.

Additionally, the CDC reports that, while fluoridation numbers improved, cavity experience in two – four-year-olds worsened. (9)

Healthy people have healthy teeth. Ten of the twelve least healthiest (10) states as reported by the United Health Foundation have the most toothless populations (11) when compared to CDC statistics, even though most of those states are heavily fluoridated (12). In fact, in Ohio were 96% of water supplies are fluoridated, too many children's teeth rot to the gumline, not from lack of fluoride but because of rotten diets. (19)

“The cavity-prone and toothless are not fluoride-deficient; but are fluoride overdosed. Poor health and/or low income predicts tooth decay,” says lawyer Paul Beeber, President, New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation. “Fluoridation is a waste of money and is no substitute for a healthy diet and dental care,” says Beeber..

Water engineers dispense fluoride chemicals into 2/3 of Americans via their water supply attempting to prevent tooth decay. However, in the United Kingdom, where only 10% drink fluoridated water, tooth decay rates are equal too or better than those of the U.S.(2) and have declined over the last ten years.(3)

In contrast, U.S. cavity rates increased (4) along with fluoride overdose symptoms, prompting some researchers to suggest that water fluoridation be stopped (5a,b). Cavity rates also increased in heavily fluoridated Australia (2/3 fluoridated) (13) where evidence shows no difference in decay rates between fluoridated water drinkers and non-drinkers (14).

Read the Remaining article here.

So, should we discontinue community water fluoridation and spend the resources in dietary consuling and early treatment for children?

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