CLEARFIELD —A safe drinking water advocate told the Davis Board of Health last week that mothers who live in areas with fluoridated water need to be advised to breast feed infants or give them ready-to-use formula.
Lorna Rosenstein, director of Waterwatch of Utah, asked Davis Board of Health members to require fluoridated public water systems to advise water users that using reconstituted infant formula with tap water could cause dental fluorosis in children.
The board took her request under advisement — not the response Rosenstein was hoping for.
Rosenstein presented information which backed up her view by citing a 2006 study by the National Academy of Sciences which revealed the results of a three and a half year study showing
“There appears to be general acceptance in today’s dental literature that enamel fluorosis is a toxic effect of fluoride intake … On a per-body weight basis, infants and young adults have approximately three-four times the exposure (to fluorides) than adults.”
Following that report, she said health advisories were issued by the Centers for Disease Control and American Dental Association that infant formula should be reconstituted with unfluoridated or bottled water.
But, she said, that warning never made it to mothers in Davis County. “I asked them, ‘are you going to alert mothers?’ and they said ‘no,’” Rosenstein told the Clipper.
Her latest request to the board came after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Environmental Protection Agency recommended last month that fluoride levels be set at 0.7 per liter of water, rather than the range that had been the recommendation before.
Prior to that recommendation, in October 2010, the Davis County Board of Health had lowered the amount of fluoride in water to 0.7 milligrams per liter, which falls in line with federal guidelines.
Rosenstein’s especially concerned that low-income parents who get food through the WIC (Women, Infants and Children) program were not warned.
Those parents cannot purchase bottled water or liquid formula through WIC.
“Mothers who are unable to breast feed, parents and caregivers who are not able to afford alternate water sources or ready-to-feed formula, or who are not aware of the ADA’s warning are at a distinct disadvantage if they live in a fluoridated community,” she said in a letter sent to the health department.
Rosenstein told the Clipper that following her short presentation to the board, members had no questions, but did agree to take her recommendation under advisement.