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FLUORIDE IN DRINKING WATER

Whether or not flouridating the public water supply is a health benefit or hazard is a very contentious issue.  There are some very strong opinions on both sides and discussions can become quite heated.  Flouride was once considered a hazardous and toxic byproduct in the manufacturing of explosives, fertilizers and other necessities. 

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WHAT IS FLUORIDE ANYWAY?

Flouride - there is in fact no such element in the periodic chart of chemistry.  The closest you come is captured molecules of a "gas" called Fluorine which is a by-product of aluminium manufacturing and the nuclear industry.  Of all the existing chemical elements, Fluorine is the most unstable.  Fluoride is the combination of Fluorine with some other substance. 
Sodium fluoride is the toxic by-product primarily used in rat and cockroach poison and is the active ingredient in toothpaste and what is added to our drinking water.  About twenty-five percent of major tranquilizers including Prozac and Nerve Gas contain sodium fluoride due to it's known anti-psychotic effects, with one of the earliest stories being of German soldiers adding it to the water supply in POW camps in order to make the prisoners "docile".

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BENEFITS OF FLUORIDE?

Research has shown fluoride to be only beneficial in treating tooth decay when applied topically to the the tooth directly.  In this way, fluoride acts as an antibiotic and kills cavity-forming bacteria found in the mouth.  There isn't actually any evidence to suggest that putting it into the water supply so that it acts systemically has any benefit to dental health.  And there isn't anything in the whole body of nutritional research to suggest that a deficiency of fluoride causes cavities therefore how can taking fluoride prevent tooth decay?  Fluorine has a natural affinity for calcium, rapidly altering calcium metabolism in our body.

Aluminium in the brain has been linked to Alzheimer's Disease for years now, and as we know for a fact that Fluoride has a strong affinity for aluminium, it has left some experts wondering as to whether there is a possible link between Fluoride and Alzheimer's Disease. 

We know that fluoride stops the thyrid from absorbing iodine, and excess fluoride consumption has been linked to hypothyroidism.  So if you have issues with your thyroid, it may be worth looking into how much fluoride you are exposed to.

So with fluoride added into our water supply, how on earth do you reduce your exposure?  There are a few measures you can take:

  • Use fluoride-free toothpaste and mouthwash
  • Don't purchase bottled water that has added fluoride
  • Install a tap-mounted water filter to remove contaminants such as fluoridw and chlorine from your water

Most beverages and foods contain sodium fluoride which is not naturally occurring but intentionally added.  The only good food sources of fluoride are tea, seafoods, seaweed and some natural water sources.  Most of our fluoride intake comes from toothpaste and if your town water supply has been fortified with added fluoride.

Tips for little ones:

  • You can start dental hygiene as soon as baby's first tooth appears.  Just wipe the front and back of each tooth with a clean, damp cloth. 
  • A child's sot toothbrush (designed for children under two) can be introduced from about 12 months of age.
  • Introduce a low-fluoride toothpaste (as recommended by your dentist) at about 18 months, using a pea-sized amount of toothpaste.
  • You'll need to help your toddler with tooth brushing (even pre-schoolers and younger primary school children still need a hand), encouraging your little one to spit the toothpaste after brushing.

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RDA for FLUORIDE

Adults is 1.5mg - 4mg

Children aged between 6 months and 3 years old is 0.25mg

Children aged 3 to 6 years old is 0.5 milligrams

Children aged between 6 and 16 years of age is 1 milligram

FLUORIDE TOXICITY

In a developing child, excess fluoride intake, greater than 6 milligrams, can result in mottling of teeth.  If these same children were in fact exposed to levels of fluoride higher than 20 milligrams daily, it can result in a condition called fluorosis, which refers to crumbling and weekened structure of their teeth.  Adults don't get this mottling of their teeth if exposed to high doses of fluoride but doses higher than 20 milligrams can cause stomach upsets, bone pains, and poor structural bone strength.  Other human signs of overdose include prickling, tingling, itchy skin, drooping eyelids, tremors, salivary gland changes and headache.

Date posted: 2013-10-18 | posted by: debras




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