MANGALORE: The Fluoride Research team at Nitte University is working at determining recommended daily allowance (RDA) of fluoride from regular food items consumed by people to help understand the amount of this inorganic anion of fluorine from different dietary sources to maintain health.
Apart from this, the team is also working on cost-effective de-fluoridation as well as fluoride supplementation methods suitable for Indian population including people living in remote rural areas.
Prof Chitta Ranjan Chowdhury, leader of Team Fluoride and Health, Department of Oral Biology and Genomic Studies, Nitte University, said: we have surveyed all districts of Karnataka to determine the fluoride in drinking water and have an updated Fluoride map for the state. We have seen most of the districts have lower concentration of Fluoride against normal values – of optimal concentration: 0.8-1ppm – barring a few northern districts. And have seen that a significant number of population suffering from skeletal, ligaments and teeth fluorosis—a mottling and disabling diseases of hard structures of human system.
The experts’ working group, consisting of 22 professionals, met recently to discuss and draw a road-map on how to tackle fluoride problem starting with Karnataka. “We also plan to develop our own guideline for Fluoride, health and Environment in line with WHO directive and upon consultation with experts and organisations at home and abroad,” said Chowdhury.
Pointing out that districts located on Andhra Pradesh state border like Bidar, Gulbarga, Yadgir, Raichur are fluoride endemic, he said the group will deliberate on finding cost-effective de-fluoridation to address the situating. Noting that city areas had less fluoride in drinking water, he said Mangalore City Corporation will be requested for supplementation of supply water with proper monitoring.
The Experts’ Group has declared that fluorosis affected areas will be intervened systematically to eradicate Fluorosis both for dental and musculo-skeletal system.
The group has also decided to develop user friendly website where community participation for Fluorosis protection will be added. Also educational stuff for mothers and young adults will be provided with ill effect of Fluoride if excess and deficient, Chowdhury said adding fortification of fluoride in diet, marketed food, drinks etc will be monitored and supplementation of fluoride in tooth paste and dentifrices, mouth will be quantified in order to ensure recommendation to drug control board and statutory bodies of the country.