We just received the 2022 annual drinking water quality report. Fluoride content of the Refugio municipal water supply was an alarming 1.51 ppm. This is a warning to ALL parents in the region with children under ten years of age. Having tested many water supplies over the last four decades, Fluoride is generally in excess of 0.5 ppm in most of our regional water supplies These are levels that can and will cause staining of the teeth that will range from white spots to brown discoloration of the permanent teeth particularly if your children are drinking tea, which is high in Fluoride content. You need to take precautions with children six years of age or younger to prevent Fluorosis, with particular attention paid to banning your children from drinking tea.
Developing permanent teeth in children under the age of six are particularly susceptible to this staining referred to as “Fluorosis.’ Fluoride is a natural trace element necessary for the development of the tea mint. Levels of Fluoride in drinking water that exceed 1 ppm are associated with increased developmental staining in teeth. A glass of tea will have a Fluoride level of 8 ppm in addition to the water with which it was brewed. Using this water for cooking also increases the concentration of Fluoride from evaporation, all of which can contribute to Fluorosis.
Considering the other contaminants reported in our local water samples including Arsenic, it would be wise to install a point-of-use filter or a reverse osmosis drinking water system, but keep in mind that Fluoride cannot be filtered out with most reverse osmosis systems despite what these companies will tell you to sell their product. You will still need to restrict your children to drinking bottled water, and it may be necessary to cook with bottled water or water from a known source.
If you are on a rural water system, the shallow wells are extremely erratic in Fluoride content and can be dangerously high in Arsenic, Fluoride, radioactive materials or farm waste contaminates. For our patients of record, you can contact our office and we will supply you with a water sample test kit. This analysis would be a wise move for any of our patients on any of the local city water and any of the school systems. In the past, the municipal supplies of Austwell/Tivoli and especially Bayside have been high enough to cause severe damage to the developing permanent teeth in children. A good word of advice for our parents living anywhere else, if you don’t know what the Fluoride level is in the water your children are drinking, have it tested, or contact the local water department for a copy of the mandatory tests.
J. Tim Rainey, DDS, MAGD
*Original full-text article online at: https://www.stexasnews.com/goliad_advance_guard/opinions/parents-urged-to-take-precautions-to-prevent-fluorosis-in-children/article_0c7d25ca-2a26-11ee-a2f0-4be96585ac97.html