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Water Fluoridation

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So, no question/request too big or small 😎

❝I watched a documentary recently on Fluoride in our drinking water & the dangers of it. Why are we poisoning our water?❞

This is a great question, and it certainly is controversial. It sounds like the documentary you watched was predominantly or entirely negative, but there’s a lot of science to back both sides of this, and it’s not even that the science is contradictory (it’s not). It’s that what differs is people’s opinions about whether benefiting one thing is worth creating a risk to another, and that means looking at:

  • What is the risk associated with taking no action (error of omission)?
  • What is the risk associated with taking an action (error of commission)?

The whole topic is worth a main feature, but to summarize a few key points:

  • Water fluoridation is considered good for the prevention of dental cavities
  • Water fluoridation aims to deliver fluoride and doses far below dangerous levels
    • This requires working on consumer averages, though
  • ”Where do we put the safety margins?” is to some extent a subjective question, in terms of trading off one aspect of health for another
  • Too much fluoride can also be bad for the teeth (at least cosmetically, creating little white* spots)
  • Detractors of fluoride tend to mostly be worried about neurological harm
    • However, the doses in public water supplies are almost certainly far below the levels required to cause this harm.
      • That said, again this is working on consumer averages, though.
  • A good guide is: watch your teeth! Those white* spots will be “the canary in the coal mine” of more serious harm that could potentially come from higher levels due to overconsumption of fluorine.

*Teeth are not supposed to be pure white. The “Hollywood smile” is a lie. Teeth are supposed to be a slightly off-white, ivory color. Anything whiter than that is adding something else that shouldn’t be there, or stripping something off that should be there.

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