The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is now planning to reduce fluoride levels in the water systems despite instigating it years ago. It has admitted that it was a mistake and cited studies that show the negative effects of fluoride to teeth. Back in the 1940s, fluoride was massively promoted to be beneficial to teeth because of its enamel strengthening properties. Because of this, it was decided to add the substance to the drinking water in American homes and buildings. During that time, there were already some people who were protesting against this unwanted addition. They claimed that fluoride was in fact toxic to people.
These ignored worries turned out to be true. The National Academy of Sciences carried out research among people who regularly drank fluoridated water. Their case studies concluded that fluoride creates a condition called fluoridosis – a condition that is caused by high levels of ingested fluoride. This manifested in the form of teeth brittleness and vulnerability to further damage. Aside from that, it was discovered that extreme levels of fluoride could cause grave consequences such as stomach problems, bone abnormalities, kidney diseases, thyroid suppression, and neurotoxicity. These side effects contradict the widely held assumption that consuming fluoride from water is harmless.
Dr. William Maas, the director of the Division of Oral Health of the Centers for Disease Control, is a proponent of community water fluoridation. He maintained that processing fluoride into the community’s drinking water supply is an effective and economical way of distributing fluoride to many citizens. Because of considerable support from other people who were considered as authorities on the matter, the motion was implemented in the 40’s and continues up to this time. Around 70% of America’s population receive fluoride from their water supply.
In contrast, other nations do not practice this system. Britain does a little fluoridation but not as enthusiastically as the US, with as little as 10% of its citizens getting fluoridated water from their water treatment facilities. This illustrates the fact that not all scientists agree on the idea that people should get fluoride to improve dental health. It is only in the US where some individuals have influenced people to think that they would benefit much from taking fluoride – to the point that fluoride is mass distributed to most homes in America.
The End Result
Today, however, the EPA is acknowledging studies that reveal fluoride’s harmful effect to teeth. They have made their own study and confirmed that for every 5 teenagers, there are 2 of them who have pitted and discolored teeth, which is a result of drinking water treated with fluoride regularly and excessively. These incidents have prompted the EPA to consider reducing the fluoride content in US water supplies. Though the EPA may be too slow in this decision, it is still a welcome relief to many people who knew the dangers of fluoride all this time. This also serves as a lesson that giving complete control to self-proclaimed authorities may not turn out to be a good idea after all.
You can find out more about this on the cdc.gov website.