Fluoride Action Network

Fluoride Debate in Monticello

Source: WCTV (Tallahassee, Thomasville, Valdosta) | March 19th, 2008 | By Marise Estime
Location: United States, Florida

Health officials say one of the best tools in the war on cavities is adding fluoride to the water, but Monticello city officials stopped adding the cavity-fighting substance a few years ago.

Judith Corbin is a dental hygienist who takes great pride in helping kids get a beautiful smile, but Corbin says in the past few years not a lot of children in Monticello are showing their pearly whites because tooth decay is now rampant. Lack of fluoride and poor hygiene are **partly** to blame.

Corbin says, “It’s one of the easiest way to control some of the dental decay that we see and we do see a lot of decay in this county.”

While the health department is polishing up its act to prevent decay, city officials are struggling with the idea of putting fluoride back into the water supply – two years after Hurricane Katrina destroyed the equipment used to do the job.

City Clerk Emily Anderson says, “Fluoride is a very caustic chemical it’s dangerous to work with we have to test the water quite frequently to make sure the fluoride in the water is safe and so it’s a lot of oversight to begin adding it again and we’ll have to get our equipment repaired and replaced.”

Mayor Gerrold Austin says, “Our kids the image of themselves is their mouth the state will pay for the equipment it’s not a matter of monies the state will pay for that for us.”

But some say the state could be digging deep into its coffers …if more kids end up with decay and oral disease

Council members will be addressing the issue at their April meeting.