Long before Stand for Children began promoting fluoridation in Beaverton, UNICEF posted its Web site report seriously challenging traditional thinking on fluoride‘s safety and effectiveness in reducing tooth decay (www.unicef.org/programme/wes/info/fluor.htm).
Most of Europe — only 2 percent fluoridated, with decay rates comparable to or better than ours — ended the practice of adding fluoride to water years ago.
In the U.S., a growing number of scientists and health professionals are re-examining this issue, due in part to startling revelations from a recent congressional investigation.
For years, Americans have been told fluoridation is safe.
But congressional inquiry forced the issue. “Show us the studies,” the committee said to our regulatory agencies. They came up empty-handed.
The Environmental Protection Agency admitted that hydrofluorosilicic acid and sodium fluoride — fluoridation chemicals ingested daily by more than 116 million Americans — have never been tested for human consumption.
The Food and Drug Administration said unequivocally that fluoride, when ingested for prevention of tooth decay, is a drug, but one the agency has never approved. Remember, only the FDA can assure the safety and efficacy of drugs.
NSF International, a private organization overseeing water additives, confirmed that its certification standard for fluoridation chemicals (Standard 60) requires that manufacturers provide available toxicological studies on their products and the contaminants they contain. Again, the committee asked for studies. NSF didn’t have any.
No medical or dental association that endorses fluoridation or advocacy group, such as Stand for Children, can provide these studies either.
Aside from this appalling lack of testing and regulation, there is another concern. Americans and their children, especially those in fluoridated communities, are being overexposed to fluoride, mostly from a combination of diet (items processed with fluoridated water or contaminated with fluoride-based pesticide residue), toothpaste, supplements and/or fluoridated water.
The only detailed, national survey on dental fluorosis (NIDR 1986-87) found that an alarming 66.4 percent of children living in “optimally” fluoridated communities had fluorosis on one or more teeth (vs. 40.1 percent of children in nonfluoridated communities; see www.keepers-of-the-well.org/ due_diligence.html).
Dental fluorosis, medically defined as “chronic fluorine poisoning,” is the first sign of fluoride toxicity, a red flag that exposure is excessive and out of control.
Please, before you vote, read opposing arguments submitted by medical, dental, environmental and legal professionals in your voters’ pamphlet.
Then make the only choice protective of your kids, your health and your water, all of them precious: Say no to fluoridation.