To fluoridate or not to fluoridate? That’s the question at the heart of a debate raging at Peel Council.
Peel is sticking with its 40-year-old tradition of adding fluoride to the municipal water supply, but continues to feel the heat from those opposed to the practice.
A group, comprised mainly of Peel residents, has added its voice to a growing chorus of critics across North America arguing that water fluoridation can be linked to serious health problems.
They point to evidence they believe shows a link between exposure to fluoride in drinking water and several adverse health affects including dental fluorosis — caused by excessive ingestion of fluoride during the tooth forming years — gene mutation and cancer.
The group, which plans to address Regional Council again in January, has called on Peel to follow a handful of communities, including Calgary, in putting a stop to fluoridation.
But Peel has reaffirmed its position on fluoride, opting to trust the available research that deems the practice to be a safe and effective way to reduce cavities, which is particularly beneficial for children in poorer areas who don’t have access to regular dental treatment.
We believe Peel made the right move here. We don’t feel there’s enough evidence to warrant closing the tap on fluoride.
But that’s to say Peel should close the books on the matter completely. Advocates on both sides of the debate continue to raise important questions about fluoridation and its impact on health.
We feel the public needs to be informed about the issue. That way, they can decide for themselves.