Fluoride Action Network

CDC Data Shows More US Children are Overexposed to Fluoride Than Ever Before

Fluoride Action Network Press Release
Posted on May 8th, 2023

NORTH SUTTON, N.H.May 8, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Government data shows that tens-of-millions of U.S. residents have visible signs of overexposure to fluoride. The US Centers For Disease Control’s (CDC) National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) has consistently found skyrocketing rates of dental fluorosis, reports the Fluoride Action Network.

The CDC reported that 41% of adolescents (12 to 15) had dental fluorosis in 2004. At the time, this was an increase of over 400% from the rates found 60 years prior. The 2012 survey found that the rate jumped significantly to 65+% of adolescents with dental fluorosis.

Now, according to a recent study (Yang, June 2021) published in the journal Ecotoxicology and Environmental Safety using the data from the NHANES 2015-16 survey, the “prevalence of dental fluorosis was 70% in U.S. children.”

Dental fluorosis is a permanent tooth enamel defect caused by excessive fluoride intake during childhood.  It appears as white spots or lines in milder cases and pitted and stained enamel in more severe cases, weakening the teeth and resulting in increased decay. More importantly, fluorosis is a biomarker of overexposure to fluoride.

Ingesting fluoridated water — particularly in reconstituted infant formula — and processed foods made with fluoridated water are recognized as the primary sources of exposure, though swallowing toothpaste and fluoride prescriptions also contribute.

2015 review of the practice of fluoridation by the Cochrane Collaboration, the gold standard for evidence-based reviews of health interventions, found that “there is a significant association between dental fluorosis (of aesthetic concern or all levels of dental fluorosis) and [water] fluoride level.”

This means that the teeth of millions of children, teens and adults have already been damaged by overexposure to fluoride during their first 8 years of life, and the CDC, along with the other promoters of fluoridation are fully aware.

However, the teeth are not the only tissues in the body that are harmed by or accumulate fluoride. There is now a large body of government-funded studies linking early life exposure to neurotoxicity, including during infancy.

NHANES data have been used in recent published peer-reviewed studies to link fluoridated water with a number of additional side effects, including earlier onset of menstruation for black teens, sleep disorders in adolescents, increased uric acid levels in the blood, and kidney and liver impairment in adolescents.