Fluoride Action Network


In this project, the relationship between fluorine content in drinking water and dental health of residents in some large cities in China was evaluated. The concentration of fluorine in tap water and in urine of local subjects of 28 cities and 4 high fluorine villages in China shows a strong positive correlation (r2=0.96, S.E.=0.9881). Our studies indicate that drinking water is the most important source of fluorine intake for Chinese people, and in more than 90% of urban cities, fluorine concentrations in drinking water are below levels recommended by the WHO (approximately 0.5–1.0 mg/l). A 1995 investigation by The National Committee on Oral Health of China (NCOH) shows the relationship between average number of decayed, missing and filled teeth (DMFT) of urban residents and fluorine concentration in drinking water to be negatively correlated but not forming a good linear relationship. Our results, together with the previous study, suggest that: (1) dental caries of the study population can be reduced by drinking water fluoridation and that (2) other factors such as economic level, weather, lifestyle, food habits, living condition, etc., of a city can also affect the incidence of dental caries that cannot be predicted by fluoridation alone. Research on the relation between index of fluorosis (IF) and the fluorine concentration in drinking water for the four high fluorine villages showed that the recommended concentration of fluorine in drinking water can protect from dental fluorosis.