Conspiracy theorists can rejoice as fluoride will be out of water in Spruce Grove and Stony Plain for a little while longer.
The naturally occurring mineral prevents tooth decay and has been added to fluid in the Edmonton region since 1966. Through the history of the compound being added to what people use to drink and bathe with, some have floated baseless and unfounded claims of danger and it was announced in 2019 that the supply for Spruce Grove, Stony Plain and other parts of the area would have to be eliminated or reduced until March of this year due to upgrades at EPCOR’s E.L. Smith Water Treatment Plant located in the southwest portion of the capital city.
This was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and now officials are saying to expect the compound that is odorless and tasteless to make a return later in the fall. One of the key reasons for the delay was in part due to guidelines needed for work on storage tanks in tight spots.
“To effectively reintroduce fluoride treatment requires our staff to be in close contact to one another for prolonged periods in a small space,” spokeswoman Kelly Struski wrote in a recent email to the Edmonton Journal. “We needed special considerations before moving ahead. We have advised Alberta Environment and Parks and Alberta Health that [we have delayed] until we are able to safely recommission the facility.”
The North Saskatchewan River has fluoride levels at about 0.1 parts per million and with that normally added in a total of 0.7 parts per million is usually found in the water supply. Alberta Health Services recommends use of fluoridated toothpaste during the disruption and, locally, Stony Plain dentist Salman Jivani said that normally the paste is enough for the average adult to get by on for their oral health, too.
“The systemic in water is used to provide fluoride to populations that cannot access dental care,” he added. “Toothpaste is usually sufficient normally if it can be accessed. When you get older the water-based does not really have an effect. It is moreso for those in need and youth.”
*Original article online at https://www.sprucegroveexaminer.com/news/local-news/fluoride-to-remain-absent-from-tri-region-water-for-longer
August 30, 2020. Fluoride interruption to 280,000 homes in Edmonton region extended into late fall due to COVID-19. By Dustin Cook, Edmonton Journal.