Letter: Time to rethink fluoridation



In the 50 years since the decision was made to fluoridate Vancouver’s water, scientific evidence continues to mount that fluoridation is an ineffective and dangerous practice. As science officer for Fluoride Action Network, I’d like you to consider:

Most fluoridating chemicals are industrial-grade silicofluorides that have never been tested for safety, contain contaminants (e.g. arsenic), and may increase blood-lead levels. World Health Organization data indicate that tooth decay has declined similarly in all industrialized western countries, irrespective of fluoridation status.

Forty-one percent of 12 to 15 year olds have dental fluorosis indicating fluoride overexposure.

Fluoride crosses the placenta and can significantly alter brain development. Studies link fluoride with reduced IQ in children. Infants fed formula made with fluoridated water receive 200 times more fluoride than breast-fed babies. Fluoride has been declared an “endocrine disrupter.” Even low levels can alter thyroid function. Fetuses, infants, minorities, low-income families, diabetics, and kidney patients are disproportionately harmed by fluoride.

Numerous sources of fluoride exist, including food, water, toothpaste, air, soil, pharmaceuticals, and pesticides.

Of these, the largest intake is from drinking water. For communities that fluoridate, this is the easiest source to remove to protect everyone. For information visit http://www.FluorideAlert.org.

Tara Blank