The Green Party has said it would end the fluoridation of the State’s water supplies if elected to Government.
Health spokesman John Gormley said that water fluoridation had reached its sell-by date and that the latest international research meant that the practice was no longer tenable.
Speaking at a press conference in Dublin, Mr Gormley said: “The latest advice from the American Dental Association tells parents to avoid using fluoridated water when bottle feeding babies because of the dangers of fluorosis – the staining and pitting of teeth which can result from overexposure to fluoride.
“There has been a huge increase in fluorosis in Ireland in the last decade. And as it is wholly impractical for mothers to source non-fluoridated water, it is prudent to stop water fluoridation immediately.”
Green Party candidate for Dublin Central, Patricia McKenna, added: “Sources of fluoride have increased dramatically since Ireland’s water was first fluoridated, yet the Department of Health has failed to carry out a single study – despite repeated promises – on total fluoride intake.
“People should have a choice on what food and medication they consume.”
Cllr Tony McDermott, Green Party candidate for Dublin South Central, concluded: “We need to abolish the Dental Health Foundation and the Expert Body on Fluorides and Health and replace them with a Chief Dental Officer with a brief to deal with the tooth decay problem by tackling the causes – junk food and the advertising of unhealthy food to our children.”