I’m not qualified to write this post.
I’m writing it regardless because I think that there’s no real debate about water fluoridation in spite of the massive clamouring going on. Like most respiring animals I do tend to drink water and I was also duly alarmed when music magazine and noted academic journal Hot Press went into overdrive about the issue of fluoridation this fortnight.
Fluoridation is clearly now more pertinent than Daft Punk’s upcoming album (featuring Giorgio Moroder and Nile Rodgers!).
What’s Fluoridation For?
Keeps your teeth in top shape. It’s in toothpaste. Not one to take this information for granted I checked to see if this is true.
Since the 1940’s this has been consistently demonstrated to be the case. Water fluoridated areas have rates of dental decay 40%-70% lower than in areas with non-fluoridated water supplies. The World Health Organisation and numerous dental associations can be cited as supporters. Crucially there’s also 40 years of peer reviewed research that can be cited here.
Given that this hypothesis has been tested and peer reviewed for the last 60 years and shown to be consistently true I’m happy to take it for granted that my exponential dental bill and the extraction I suffered last November are the least of what I could have endured if it weren’t for fluoridation.
Poisoning the masses?
There’s a couple of reasons being mooted to stop fluoridation. In my reading and questioning I’ve not been impressed with Hot Press’s pieces nor Fluoride Free Water’s own presentation of the facts. So I tested them.
Fluoride is toxic. Vitamin C is also toxic. How? You have too much of anything and you’re in trouble.
The estimated toxic dose for fluoride ingestion is 5-10 mg/kg of body weight. So if I weigh 80 kilos (cough) I’d be in trouble (acute toxicity) with 400mg to 800mg.
In Irish water the volume of fluoride added to water is 0.6–0.8 ppm (parts per million) so worst case that’s 0.8 mg per litre of water. To start causing kidney damage you’d need to be consuming at least 500 litres per day.
The estimated lethal dose for small children 500 mg so to keep your kids safe don’t make them drink 500 litres of water and you might limit your adult intake to 400 litres per day.
The real elephant in the room is seafood which can contain up to 28 mg/kg. So I’d also be pretty poisoned if ate 28 kilos of cod…
In all seriousness tooth paste is probably something you shouldn’t let children eat as it can actually kill. There may be a point of view that if your child is inclined to eat toothpaste by the tube you’re in for an interesting couple of years anyway.
According to Fluoride Free Water Ireland has a “shockingly high” level of fluoridation – 71%.
I work in PR and I know how to spin figures. This chart annoyed me as very shoddy propaganda. By relaying that a high amount of fluoride is toxic to then move and say that Ireland has 71% fluoridation is scaremongering. What is actually being said is that 71% of Ireland’s water supplies have homeopathic levels of fluoride (i.e. up 0.8ppm).
The graph also fallaciously implies that we’re the only country in Europe with this quantity of fluoride in water. There’s a lie here straight up in that it is highly unlikely that 0% of each of the countries listed don’t have fluoride in their water supplies. As a naturally occurring mineral it’s already in the water in many areas. (That and the figure for France is 10%).
One developed country missing off the graph is the USA. A little poking around the internet reveals that fluoridated water is available to 69% of the population.
Another key difference between Ireland and our cited European neighbours is that health care systems in many of these countries and the access to dental care is more comprehensive than here.
What am I missing? – Brain Rot…
The Hot Press piece did point me to a new point of view. Quoting a Dr. Grandjean – “fluorides are known to cause brain toxicity and neurological symptoms in humans” and fluoride substances are “known by 2012 to cause adverse effects on the human nervous system” [SIC].
The piece does not mention to what degree fluoride is a brain toxin. As I’ve demonstrated, if fluoride is causing brain damage to children we should be looking at sea food and toothpaste. The problem here is that if we ate less oily fish due to a “fluoride scare” we could be passing on a deluge of very real brain health problems to a generation of fatty acid starved children.
I’m going to pull a Socrates on this and say I don’t really know. I do know that there appears to be some serious fact bending on the part of the fluoridation nay sayers and this has to be held to account by someone.
Please correct me if you feel I’m not in the full picture but if you do correct me please give references to credible sources.
A few years ago a “scientist” spuriously associated the MMR vaccine with autism. Before his thesis could be tested by his peers he had caused enough panic for a generation of children to be left unvaccinated. Last Friday a 25 year old man died of measles in Swansea in an outbreak caused by his nonsense. Worth bearing in mind.