NHS advisers are urging ministers to fluoridate Scotland’s water supply to mass-medicate children who face poor dental health.
While opponents claim that adding the chemical can cause tooth mottling and brittle bone diseases, NHS Health Scotland says it is a safe and effective way to prevent tooth decay.
A recent report from the National Dental Inspection Programme for health boards found about one-third of five-year-olds in Scotland have tooth decay and “clear health inequalities persist” when it comes to dental health.
Some health campaigners regard compulsory fluoridation as the best way to improve Scotland’s dental health record, which ranks among the worst in Europe. They support the radical action to deal with high levels of decay among children who consume sugary drinks and neglect to brush their teeth.
Ministers could face resistance from the public if they adopt the idea. A Scottish government consultation paper, published in 2002, which floated…