Friday, March 25, 2011

Dentists Protect Fluoride Instead of Babies

For Babies, Fluoride is Nothing to Smile About

Almost half of US children have fluoride-discolored teeth (dental fluorosis). So, health officials advise avoiding mixing fluoridated water into infant formula. But New Hampshire dentists, not only fought against publicizing such efforts but, glorified fluoride instead. 
The New Hampshire Dental Society (NHDS)  lobbied against  required formula/fluoride warnings  on water bills (1) then promoted fluoride with a new website and press release conspicuously excluding infant warnings.
Fluoride is added to water supplies ostensibly to reduce tooth decay.  There is no dispute that too much fluoride damages teeth and bones. 
Fluoride is also present in all infant formulas, according to  Dr. Howard Koh,  Assistant Secretary for Health, US Department of Health and Human Services, Koh says, “…tooth enamel formation occurs from birth until about 8 years old. This is also the time when dental fluorosis may occur with excess fluoride consumption...low-fluoride bottled water [should] be used for routinely reconstituting infant formula.”  (2)
Similar warnings have been made by the Centers for Disease Control, American Dental Association, Academy of General Dentistry, Mayo Clinic, Health Canada, Vermont Dep’t of Health, Minnesota Dental Association, Delta Dental, Environmental Working Group and many fluoride researchers. But new parents and pediatricians, who see more babies than dentists, are rarely informed.

According to the Fluoride Action Network (FAN), the NHDS and the NH Oral Health Coalition “claimed that they supported educating parents about infant exposure to fluoride, but believed that the  notice should be given only in the doctor’s office, and not be placed on water bills where they claimed it could ‘scare’ water customers.”

NH Legislators suggested that the bill be re-introduced in 2012, and require warning notices on annual consumer confidence reports.  New Hampshire dentists agree, reports FAN. So why didn’t they incude this information on their “Fluoride Facts” website? Maybe the rest of their fluoride "facts" aren't so factual either.

“Exposure to excessive consumption of fluoride over a lifetime may lead to increased likelihood of bone fractures in adults, and may result in effects on bone leading to pain and tenderness,” according to the Environmental Protection Agency. (3)

Dental fluorosis afflicts more than 41% of adolescents, reports the CDC.  We don't know if these fluoride-overdosed children have weakened bones because no such studies have been done. 

Other health defects linked to fluoride have also not been studied in fluoride-overdosed children such as lower IQ, thyroid dysfunction, irritable bowel syndrome, arthritis. Absence of evidence shouldn’t be misinterpreted as absence of harm.

HHS recently lowered recommended water fluoride levels to 0.7 ppm because they acknowledge US children are fluoride overdosed. However, it makes more sense to stop fluoridation entirely to protect our children from further fluoride abuse to satisfy the politics of organized dentistry.

Fluoride never was FDA safety-tested for human ingestion. FDA regulates fluoridated toothpaste as a drug for topical application which requires poison warning labeling. The EPA regulates fluoride as a water contaminant and air pollutant. The CDC does not do original fluoride research. The CDC's Oral Health Division is hired to promote fluoridation.  The American Dental Association represents the best interests of fluoride manufacturers.

According to a study in The Anatolian Journal of Cardiology ”Fluorosis has some hormonal, gastrointestinal, hematological, skeletal, renal, respiratory, cardiovascular, immunological, neurological and development side effects.”

Public water supplies should not be used to dispense fluoride drugs to the entire population.  People need to take back their water supply from Organized Dentistry and demand their legislators side with  science which shows ingesting fluoride is ineffective at reducing tooth decay and harmful to health.

Dentists prefer to treat the water of low-income people rather than their teeth.  80% of dentists refuse Medicaid patients.  100 million Americans don’t have dental insurance.  US children have died from the consequences of untreated tooth decay and the inability to find a dentist willing to treat them.  Our emergency rooms are flood with people in dental pain costing the tax payers thousands of dollars which an $80 filling could have prevented.

Dentists need to be mandated to treat more low income people – either for free, on a sliding scale or accept government sponsored insurance.  If not, they need to step aside and allow Dental Therapists to do the job. We know dentist love mandates because they are behind virtually every fluoridation mandate in this country.


1)  Dental leaders in Dover tout economical benefits of fluoride
Government Perspectives on Healthcare
    HHS:  Proposed Guidelines on Fluoride in Drinking Water
    A Commentary By Howard K. Koh, MD, MPH