Fluoride Action Network

Abstract

In addition to differences in fluoride intake and possibly to calcium deficiency or malnutrition, there are several factors which may account for individual differences in the occurrence of dental fluorosis. Disorders in acid-base balance affect the renal handling of fluoride such that, in acidosis, the excretion rate is diminished and, in alkalosis, the excretion rate is enhanced. Thus, any factor that can decrease urinary pH would be expected to increase the likelihood of dental fluorosis and vice versa. Results from studies with both rats and dogs have shown that acid-base disturbances per se, especially acidosis, adversely affect the mineralization of enamel in a manner that resembles fluorosis. It has been found that the retention and tissue levels of fluoride are increased by residence at high altitude. It has also been found that, in the absence of fluoride exposure, residence at high altitude per se can have a profound disruptive effect on amelogenesis which could be confused with fluorosis. The effects of diseases which lead to increases in urinary flow rate and water intake on the likelihood of the occurrence of dental fluorosis are also discussed.