Fluoride

Jul 5, 2013


Discussion by: missbutton

We have a major problem here with a very vocal group of nutters  who are pressuring District Councils to have fluoride removed from the drinking water. This group bombards gullible Councillors with pseudo-science in the same way that American Creationists pressure schools to have ‘intelligent design’ included in the science curriculum. It’s not difficult to access their pseudo-scientific websites, which appear legitimate to the unwary. You only have to Google ‘Alex Jones fluoride’ to find screeds of unscientific nonsense on the ‘evils’ of fluoride. Jones is the high priest of the anti-fluoride movement; he also believes lizard aliens run the world.

These fluoride-hating hypochondriacs are holding the health of the entire country to ransom. We must speak out for the most vulnerable; our children. What a spine-chilling reminder of how vital it is to have a well-educated population. The less educated we are, the more we will be at the mercy of any pushy, noisy and manipulative group that comes along. Imagine having the ‘Theory of Flat Earth’ being taught in science classes.

These decisions need to be taken out of the hands of local Councils and put into the hands of District Health Boards, which have access to real science and scientists. Councils are being brow-beaten by pressure groups such as this one, without the greater community even being aware of it. The anti-fluoride lobby is quite open about its determination to deprive the entire country of health-giving fluoride, which is severely lacking in our water. They could simply use water filters, but these zealots aren’t content with that. They are adamant that everyone must follow their religion; one of conspiracy theories and pseudo-science. They want to return us to the days when it was the norm for people here to have false teeth before the age of twenty.

There are plenty of things ‘poisoning’ us today, but fluoride isn’t one of them.

I wonder if this is a world-wide phenomenon. They have certainly stepped up their activities recently.  I’m afraid this group is enjoying a measure of success with its idiotic campaign. Several Councils have already given in to them.

 

90 comments on “Fluoride

  • Let me play devil’s advocate.

    1. The problem with putting the fluoride in water, is you cannot control the dose. It would be better to put it in something you consume in more carefully measured quantity, e.g. milk, mouthwash, toothpaste or juice.
    2. Nearly all water is not used for drinking. It makes no sense to medicate it when it interferes, e.g. keeping tropical fish, doing chemistry.
    3. If for some reason 1 in a million people have a problem with fluoride, there is no way for them to avoid it. It is in all the food and drink. Ditto for exotic pets or plants.
    4. It is primarily for kids. Why should I as an adult take a medicine I don’t need?
    5. Chlorine is put in water, because if you don’t, you kill people. Fluoride is put in because it is cheap, and because it is a medicine that many people could benefit from. Why not then vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin E? low dose aspirin, There may be practical problems or cost problems, but in principle where would you stop?

    Of course the reasons commonly used against it are somewhat crazier:

    1. it is rat poison. It is a plot to kill you. (Ignoring that fact that natural water is much higher in some places).
    2. it will cause your teeth to fleck (but only if used in very high doses).
    3. it is a Communist plot against your freedom to drink fluoride free water (You could buy bottled unfluoridated water to get rid of some of it).
    4. You have a constitutional right to feed your kid a diet of Wendy’s burgers and Pepsi, without harmful fluoride.



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  • 2
    OHooligan says:

    What a nice, well balanced report on the issue of fluoridation. At least it’s not hard to tell where you stand on this issue.

    You don’t say which country, and it’s not shown on your profile. I wasn’t aware that it was much of an issue. Has there been any recent (legitimate) research on the pros and cons? Your own piece was no more rational than the hardline antis, lizard folk and all, but since you raised the topic, I hope to see some clear and well informed discussion. It’s not obvious to me either way, I mean I know it’s a good idea in toothpaste, but does having it in the drinking water actually make any difference to teeth? Are there any long term side effects of consuming whatever chemical it is? “Fluoride” is an ion, there has to be something else added that provides this ion, and some other ion(s) as well. It’s been used for what – half a century? What long term studies have been done, and where’s the results?

    Personally, I have a water filter because the tap water tastes awful, and my family use fluoride toothpaste because the dentist says it’s good, so I don’t think I’m of a firm opinion either way on the matter, but I don’t suppose it’s as cut and dried as your Flat Earth remark suggests. I’m assuming you went in hard to provoke a reaction.

    I look forward to some informed responses.



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  • 3
    OHooligan says:

    In reply to #1 by Roedy:

    Interesting. I see

    The problem with putting the fluoride in water, is you cannot control the dose.

    and

    it will cause your teeth to fleck (but only if used in very high doses).

    If you can’t control the dosage, how do you avoid a Very High Dose? How well is the treated water monitored? How exactly is the stuff added – is it like treating a swimming pool? Dump a drum of something into the reservoir every so often? Or is it drip-fed constantly into a pipe by some carefully calibrated slow-release device? Does it really harm tropical fish? We have a goldfish pond, normally we top it up with rainwater, but every now and then I use the garden hose. Should I use filtered water?

    So many questions, must admit I haven’t begun to look for the answers, mainly because I wasn’t interested until now. I also suspect I’ll get a lot of disinformation wherever I look, so I’m going to rely initially on the wiser heads on this forum.



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  • In reply to #3 by OHooligan:

    The dose is much higher than I expected. It is 0.5 to 1.0 mg/L (milligrams per litre), It costs about $1 a year per person. NaF is the analog of table salt. It dissolves easily in water. It is dripped into the water stream just like chlorine.

    That level might even be high enough to cause measurable corrosion in the water pipes. Think of it as like strong salt.

    One thing I don’t know is whether the intent is merely to temporarily bathe the teeth in NaF, or to circulate NaF around the body internally to affect the teeth.



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  • 5
    Seraphor says:

    Well for one thing, here in the the UK our water is flouridated with Calcium Flouride instead, which is deemed completely safe compared to Sodium Flouride used elsewhere.
    So I wouldn’t say it was a health concern over here, but as to it’s efficacy as a cavity preventative I have no idea if it’s any better or worse.
    Could someone shed some light on the differences between CaF and NaF from a dental perspective?



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  • 6
    missbutton says:

    It’s a lot more ‘balanced’ than the campaign by anti-fluoridationists. How balanced can a ‘debate’ with Creationists be? Alex Jones actually is the High Priest of anti-fluoridationists. He really does believe in lizard aliens. The anti-fluoride lobby really does have close links to the conspiracy theory movement. I come from New Zealand. Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that is at particularly low levels in our water. Before it was added to the water supply New Zealanders had appalling teeth. According to the AF lobby fluoride causes low IQ, thyroid malfunction, cancer and a host of other maladies for which there is no credible scientific evidence to support the claims. I think your sarcasm was uncalled for. Did you expect me to present ALL the scientific studies and evidence in my OP? It’s a discussion starter.

    In reply to #2 by OHooligan:

    What a nice, well balanced report on the issue of fluoridation. At least it’s not hard to tell where you stand on this issue.

    You don’t say which country, and it’s not shown on your profile. I wasn’t aware that it was much of an issue. Has there been any recent (legitimate) research on the pros…



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  • 7
    Seraphor says:

    Roedy: “The dose is much higher than I expected. It is 0.5 to 1.0 mg/L (milligrams per litre)”

    Given that the lethal dose is ‘estimated’ at between 5-10g, you’d have to drink hundreds, if not thousands of litres to see any ill effects. You probably get more flouride from the vegetables that it occurs in naturally.



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  • 8
    Alan4discussion says:

    In reply to #1 by Roedy:

    Let me play devil’s advocate.

    The problem with putting the fluoride in water, is you cannot control the dose. It would be better to put it in something you consume in more carefully measured quantity, e.g. milk, mouthwash, toothpaste or juice.

    In the UK the water has had calcium fluoride added for decades with the effect of vastly reducing tooth decay in the generations since it was added.

    It is added in measured quantities at the treatment works in a similar way to its disinfectant halogen relative chlorine.

    There are areas where fluorides naturally occur in drinking water in vastly higher concentrations than the added dosages, and there can be problems like discoloured teeth in those areas.

    Nearly all water is not used for drinking.

    It does not seem to matter with such low concentrations. There are lots of other minerals in water – particularly in groundwater aquifers. In the US river sources, there are also lots of industrial and agricultural pollutants such as mercury.



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  • 9
    ConnedCatholic says:

    Hi. I am from Cape Town. A few years ago there was some publicity about putting fluoride in our water. However it turned out that the intention was to use industrial waste. When this was exposed the idea was dropped.



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  • 10
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #1 by Roedy:

    Alan (Comment 8) hits the nail squarely on the head.

    Adding Calcium Fluoride to British drinking water has proved to be a universal boon to health. It has also caused no problem for other users (plant and fish lovers for example) that I know of – unlike the chlorine which is also, occasionally, added.

    As I recall (from a TV documentary, I’m not that old), the addition of fluoride was proposed because of the dental health benefits observed in areas where natural levels of fluorides are high. Fluoride has been added to water and toothpaste for over 50 years with no problems. Have the anti-fluoride crew in the OP area been living under a rock for the past half century?

    In Britain water fluoridation has been so successful that there are occasional attempts to add other beneficial minerals to water.

    Wikipedia has an excellent article on water fluoridation.

    New Anthropocene is an Aussie who has an excellent site for debunking pseudo-science. Check out the link to see his clear and concise treatment of the anti-fluoridation ‘arguments’. Anyone who has read creationist or anti-vaccination views will find then eerily familiar.

    One of the most common anti-fluoridation arguments is that fluorine is a poison. Here is an excellent treatment of that one point.

    When it comes to any pseudo-science that touches on health, I always turn to Quackwatch. They also have an excellent article on fluoridation

    Or we could just ask the people who really know. What do the medics say? Here’s a link to the American Dental Association’s considered, professional, view.

    Peace.



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  • 11
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    Hi missbutton,

    If you need to battle an anti-fluoridation movement in your area you can start with their own campaign.

    I was astonished to learn that the people of Portland (Or.) recently voted against fluoridation. I looked at the Portland ‘anti’ campaign Net site. Some of their argument is based on straight lies. For example the 10 reasons page (see link) twice cites a National Academy of Sciences publication: Fluoride in Drinking Water.

    Yet here is an extract from that very publication:

    Various sources have concluded that water fluoridation has been an effective method for preventing dental decay (Newbrun 1989; Ripa 1993; Horowitz 1996; CDC 2001; Truman et al. 2002). Water fluoridation is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as one of the 10 great public health achievements in the United States, because of its role in reducing tooth decay in children and tooth loss in adults (CDC 1999). Each U.S. Surgeon General has endorsed water fluoridation over the decades it has been practiced, emphasizing that “[a] significant advantage of water fluoridation is that all residents of a community can enjoy its protective benefit…. A person’s income level or ability to receive dental care is not a barrier to receiving fluoridation’s health benefits” (Carmona 2004).

    Whenever your opponents say that they quote science – always check their sources.

    Also, the ‘anti’ campaign is clearly misusing data on uncontrolled fluoridation contamination of water by industry and agriculture. The chemistry, and therefore the wording, of documents on contamination by fluorides will appear almost identical to those not educated in basic chemistry. Unfortunately, the ‘anti’ brigade also link these studies to the highly emotive area of health. This is the core of their campaign, and the probable reason for their success in Portland.

    Peace.



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  • 12
    Nick LaRue says:

    I’d like to put my two cents worth in being a person who actually did some work in the water industry and has been involved with a fluoridation plant.

    The work I did was in Australia in Queensland when they brought out the Fluoride Act in 2008 which has recently been binned by the new government and now councils are currently halting putting fluoride into the water.

    On to the my opinion.

    Fluoride is quite dangerous but of course used in small quantities it’s a useful tool against tooth decay according to all the medical studies done on it. When I was involved in the fluoridation plant there was a change in the government specification due to an overdosing incident of fluoride due to a faulty system so extra safety systems had to be introduced. The system we chose was fully automatic and used dissoluble bags to prevent anyone having to handle the actual fluoride. The fluoride is mixed with water and made into a solution prior to dosing it into the water system using a highly accurate dosing pump and metering system.

    Though a high quantity of fluoride will pretty much kill you instantly, larger doses than recommended will cause your bones to become brittle over time, more or less turning them into chalk, so this is why in areas where they have higher levels of natural fluoride they have to control it.

    Fluoride is a natural substance found in soil. The fluoride used by industry is typically a byproduct of the creation of fertilizer which is then purified to a medical grade.

    Now I have no issue with having fluoride in water, I don’t personally feel it does any harm to anyone as long as it’s controlled properly and monitored.

    My main concern has to do with the comparative studies from the past to the present. They typically look at tooth decay in young children, I believe between 5-9 when adult teeth are starting to come in. My issue here is that in the past people were more likely to drink water from the tap, these days however people drink bottled water and often have water filtration systems in their homes. So I’m not entirely convinced of the benefits of putting fluoride in the water looking at it from this point of view.

    The other issue I have is more towards parents of young children. I’ve seen many parents letting their young children (2 years old in some cases, possibly younger) drink high concentrated sugary drinks. I know that some studies use this as a marker but I wouldn’t be overly surprised if the sugar concentration between the past and now is different, whether that has been taking into consideration I don’t know. However one has to ask why are parents feeding their kids such high sugar drinks? Maybe some better education and legislation for ‘children’ drinks should be adapted? Better understanding of proper oral hygiene?

    Lastly, looking at those who are apposed to fluoridation. It typically comes down to this idea of putting ‘dangerous chemicals’ into the ‘natural’ water systems. This is their biggest argument which is totally bunk. They, like the anti-vaxers, have this issue of not understanding what is in nature to begin with. They have this idea that humans are playing around with nature and screwing up their pristine existence. Which irritates me to no end.



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  • 13
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    Hi missbutton,

    A couple of things.

    First, two corrections on my previous posts: Not all of Britain has fluoridated water. Scotland does not and for the rest it depends on the Water Company. Also, calcium fluoride occurs naturally in many water areas but the fluoride added (where it is added) is sodium fluoride. Although that makes no material difference to my previous comments I wouldn’t want to upset any pernickety types out there.

    Second, the fact that ‘anti’ types use tooth decay statistics as if they are correlated to community fluoridation of the water supply. This is one of their big arguments.

    However, there is no correlation (and if there were they would still have all their work to do, because they would still need to show evidence of causation) between the deliberate fluoridation of water and rates of tooth decay. Where countries do not actively fluoridate their water is often naturally fluoridated by the water coming from areas of land with minerals in it. The water dissolves those minerals and, voilà, fluoridated water.

    Also, many countries have decided to deliver fluoridation via foods – salt and milk are favourites – just as iodine is added to salt in the US. Fluoridation of water is cheaper.

    In addition, lest we forget, nearly all toothpastes have fluoride added.

    In order for numbers on tooth decay, by country, to make sense you would need to find areas with no natural fluoridation in their water supplies (incl. bottled water – much of which is deliberately mineral water because minerals are good for you), in their food and in their toothpaste, tooth floss (etc.).

    In short: Country statistics on tooth decay and active fluoridation of drinking water are meaningless.

    Peace.



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  • 14
    missbutton says:

    Thanks for that Nick. The same kind of people were opposed to the pasteurisation of milk when it first came into practise.
    As far as the sugary drinks go, I can never understand why parents do this to their children. Children actually like water. There is no need to give them anything else to drink. Fluoride is probably needed even more now, because in the days before it was added to the water it was quite normal for people to have false teeth in their teens. It was also fairly common for false teeth ‘vouchers’ to be given as wedding presents (a voucher to take to your dentist specifically for dentures), so one can only imagine how much worse it would be now, in this sugar-laden age.
    In reply to #12 by Nick LaRue:

    I’d like to put my two cents worth in being a person who actually did some work in the water industry and has been involved with a fluoridation plant.

    The work I did was in Australia in Queensland when they brought out the Fluoride Act in 2008 which has recently been binned by the new government an…



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  • 15
    missbutton says:

    Hi Stephen,
    I agree. The ‘antis’ manipulate the statistics by comparing places with added fluoride to those without it, but don’t say whether those without it have enough naturally occurring fluoride in the water, so therefore any comparison is meaningless. In reply to #13 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    Hi missbutton,

    A couple of things.

    First, two corrections on my previous posts: Not all of Britain has fluoridated water. Scotland does not and for the rest it depends on the Water Company. Also, calcium fluoride occurs naturally in many water areas but the fluoride added (where it is added) is…



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  • 16
    Nick LaRue says:

    In reply to #14 by missbutton:

    Thanks for that Nick. The same kind of people were opposed to the pasteurisation of milk when it first came into practise.
    As far as the sugary drinks go, I can never understand why parents do this to their children. Children actually like water. There is no need to give them anything else to drink….

    My mother suffered enamel decay and lost all her teeth at a fairly young age (I think it was around 15) and had to wear dentures ever since, she’s 65 now. I’m not sure when they brought in fluoridation into Canada (where I’m originally from) but I know I and my siblings must have benefited from it as none us have had an issue like that though I had pretty bad teeth as a child mostly due to my lack of proper oral hygiene and eating way too many sweets. Thankfully my adult teeth are not so bad though there are some other issues mostly due to bad dental practices when I was younger. I unfortunately hate dentist now. Yes I know it’s irrational.

    As for the fluoride debate I think its all garbage, there’s no real danger with fluoride. I guess the real issue is to find out how effective it is now though that may be hard to determine.



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  • 17
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #12 by Nick LaRue:

    Hi Nick,

    Fluoride is quite dangerous but of course used in small quantities it’s a useful tool against tooth decay according to all the medical studies done on it.

    This is a significant part of the anti-fluoridation movement’s pseudo-science. Iodine, taken in a large enough quantity, would kill. Yet the US (and some other countries) mandate the addition of this mineral to salt. Indeed, it is often contained in sources of salt used for human consumption.

    If you were locked in a room that contained an atmosphere of 100% oxygen you would die. Perhaps we should have an anti-oxygen campaign?

    When I was involved in the fluoridation plant there was a change in the government specification due to an overdosing incident of fluoride due to a faulty system so extra safety systems had to be introduced.

    It is a sad fact of life – and I am not making excuses for anyone here – that advancing civilisation does, just occasionally, lead to dangerous errors. As your story shows they tend to be short term problems, thankfully.

    Fluoride is a natural substance found in soil. The fluoride used by industry is typically a by-product of the creation of fertilizer which is then purified to a medical grade.

    Yes, and this does create confusion among the general public over what is meant by fluoridation.

    My main concern has to do with the comparative studies from the past to the present. They typically look at tooth decay in young children, I believe between 5-9 when adult teeth are starting to come in.

    See this study which, basically, finds that water fluoridation has benefits beyond childhood.

    My issue here is that in the past people were more likely to drink water from the tap, these days however people drink bottled water …

    I have never understood that. Apart from the convenience factor when your out and about why would you not drink water from a tap? Penn and Teller did a great show on this where they turned a Restaurant into a controlled scientific experiment and proved that the diners couldn’t tell the difference between water from a hosepipe in the Yard at the back of the Restaurant and expensive bottled water. Personally, I always ask for tap water in London restaurants it’s often free, always cheaper, and tastes just fine. London’s newspaper – a couple of years ago – did a similar survey to Penn and Tellers’s experiment where they asked people to rate unlabelled water. Tap water came second (out of about 10).

    Also, I know of no country that regulates bottled water as much as it does tap water. It’s amusing to think of all those anti-fluoridation folk who stand outside polling stations drinking fluoridated bottled water – and not realising the hypocrisy of what they’re doing!

    … and often have water filtration systems in their homes.

    Maybe this is a bigger thing in Australia, but in most parts of the World that I’ve visited home water filters are usually only installed in homes where a member of the household has a particular reaction to some aspect of local water.

    I’m not entirely convinced of the benefits of putting fluoride in the water looking at it from this point of view.

    Water filters in homes must account for < 0.01% of homes – even if we’re only talking of Western democracies. Meanwhile, many anti-fluoridation people drink fluoridated water without realising both because fluoridation is natural and because water (bottled AND tapped) comes without labelling on fluoridation. Bottled water comes with labels on other forms of mineralisation – but, as far as I can tell Worldwide, not on fluoridation.

    The argument is about health. Why are you not convinced by the studies that show a direct link between better oral health and fluoridation?

    Lastly, looking at those who are opposed to fluoridation. It typically comes down to this idea of putting ‘dangerous chemicals’ into the ‘natural’ water systems. This is their biggest argument which is totally bunk.

    I couldn’t agree more. This is a sad indictment of the low levels of achievement by science education in recent decades.

    • All chemicals are natural. We are made of chemicals. Plants, animals, even the air we breath – all chemicals. Chemists do not make chemicals – they merely refine them from natural resources.

    • Nature is red in tooth and claw – and that includes at the chemical level. Water from a spring containing lead, arsenic, or mercury – perfectly natural. Don’t even get me started on biological elements that occur naturally in water.

    They, like the anti-vaxers, have this issue of not understanding what is in nature to begin with. They have this idea that humans are playing around with nature and screwing up their pristine existence. Which irritates me to no end.

    Me too.

    Peace.



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  • 18
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #15 by missbutton:

    Hi missbutton,

    The ‘antis’ manipulate the statistics by comparing places with added fluoride to those without it, but … any comparison is meaningless.

    Thinking about it, there are other factors being ignored – dental health education, availability of dental health practitioners and treatments, quality of interventions and treatments … the use of country-specific data is basically just a con.

    Peace.



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  • 19
    SaganTheCat says:

    water companies don’t tell you this but there is a homeopathic remedy for any flouride-related conditions mixed in with their product. maybe they should point this out to counter the conspiracy theorists?



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  • You are lucky! We have some of those those nutters on Calgary city council who recently spear-headed the removal of fluoride from the city water supply. A referendum had put it in place but when the equipment needed replacing, they banded together and refused to allocate the funds.



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  • 21
    Nick LaRue says:

    In reply to #17 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #12 by Nick LaRue:

    Hi Nick,

    Fluoride is quite dangerous but of course used in small quantities it’s a useful tool against tooth decay according to all the medical studies done on it.

    This is a significant part of the anti-fluoridation movement’s pseudo-science. Iodine, taken in a lar…

    Hi Stephen,

    I didn’t say that fluoride didn’t have any benefit in adults, I was just pointing out that most studies are done regarding children of a certain age. I am an example that fluoride is beneficial to adults by having good teeth, in general.

    As for the filtered water thing. I did a quick bit of research and realized that standard water filters do not remove fluoride so that was a mistake on my side. That being said, unless you’re referring to some special filter I’d say the population with water filters is probably a bit higher than you indicated. The main thing I don’t like about drinking tap water is the chlorine. Most likely not harmful but I don’t like the smell. When I lived in North QLD the water coming out of the pipe smelled like a swimming pool, we decided to rent a water purifier while there it was that bad. Also, most restaurants typically use filtered tap water. Including the UK, where I live now. So when I said filtered water I was referring to simple filters, nothing too fancy.

    As for regulating bottled water: http://www.bottledwaterinformation.co.uk/default.asp?section=5

    There is of course regulation of bottled water and most likely as strict as tap water, though you’d be surprised what comes out of taps in some places.

    I also didn’t say I wasn’t convinced of the studies. I was stating the issues with how the data was acquired from past to present. People’s habits have changed as I’ve stated. We can’t say for sure that if there is fluoride in the water that people are benefiting from it and with the increase in ‘sugary’ drinks we can’t say exactly how much impact fluoride is having. I’m not saying take the fluoride out of the water because of this I’m just curious if the studies holds true in todays world due to these changes. I’m sure it does to some extent, it comes down to how much tap water people consume on a regular basis. Which would be difficult to determine.



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  • 22
    missbutton says:

    You are right, not all water filters remove the fluoride. Ironically I have one that does, which I never use. I think it works by distilling the water.

    In reply to #21 by Nick LaRue:

    In reply to #17 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #12 by Nick LaRue:

    Hi Nick,

    Fluoride is quite dangerous but of course used in small quantities it’s a useful tool against tooth decay according to all the medical studies done on it.

    This is a significant part of the anti-fluoridation movement…



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  • 23
    vitalic says:

    Why do people use toothpaste as a counter-argument? No-one is ingesting toothpaste to the extent they drink water, and it even tells you on the toothpaste tube not to eat it, and young children have to be actively careful not to ingest it and only use minimal amounts.

    Personally I would err on the side of caution, there are plenty of ways to prevent tooth decay without relying on error-prone humans to reliably dose water supplies with chemicals. I use a filtration system because I don’t trust government bureaucracies with my health.



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  • 24
    Nick LaRue says:

    In reply to #23 by vitalic:

    Why do people use toothpaste as a counter-argument? No-one is ingesting toothpaste to the extent they drink water, and it even tells you on the toothpaste tube not to eat it, and young children have to be actively careful not to ingest it and only use minimal amounts.

    Personally I would err on the…

    I have to say I disagree slightly.

    First fluoride systems are engineered solutions and are covered by engineering standards and safety. Typically government projects tend to be higher standards than your typical build. I can’t speak for all governments and engineers but I would guess most don’t want to be sued…

    Second most people use too much toothpaste, you’re only supposed to use a pea shaped amount and children need even less. Also it states on the toothpaste it’s only an issue if you ingest a large amounts, like half the tube. If you’re concerned I would check the toothpaste your child uses if they are under the age of 9.

    Third, your filter would have to be a special filter to remove fluoride so you are still getting it if it’s in your water.



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  • 25
    Docjitters says:

    In reply to #23 by vitalic:

    Why do people use toothpaste as a counter-argument? No-one is ingesting toothpaste to the extent they drink water, and it even tells you on the toothpaste tube not to eat it, and young children have to be actively careful not to ingest it and only use minimal amounts.

    I agree, though toothpaste has 1000-1500 (*reads back of toothpaste tube – 1450ppm Sodium Monofluorophosphate) times the fluoride concentration of drinking water (1-1.5ppm) so you only have to swallow a bit to get your ‘dose’.

    …there are plenty of ways to prevent tooth decay without relying on error-prone humans to reliably dose water supplies with chemicals. I use a filtration system because I don’t trust government bureaucracies with my health

    The problem is that people of greater socioeconomic deprivation get more dental caries – they typically have higher-sugar diets and brush their teeth less. There is some (slightly shaky) evidence that fluoridation of drinking water evens out rates of decay across social classes (at least in the UK, 2000). There’s no good evidence yet that it increases the risk of fractures (through skeletal fluorosis).



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  • In reply to #12 by Nick LaRue:

    I’d like to put my two cents worth in being a person who actually did some work in the water industry and has been involved with a fluoridation plant.

    The work I did was in Australia in Queensland when they brought out the Fluoride Act in 2008 which has recently been binned by the new government an…

    Thanks for that. You saved me having to look it up.

    I’m part of the pre-fluoridated generation in Australia. Like everyone in my age bracket, I have a mouth full of fillings, despite taking a great deal of care with oral hygiene and having regular dental check ups from an early age.

    My children on the other hand, have great teeth, with only one filling between the two of them. A small sample I know, but a fair representation of the under 40’s bracket.

    When I was growing up, we used to marvel at the beautiful teeth of the Americans. I believe they had floride for far longer than we did.



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  • 27
    Docjitters says:

    In reply to #1 by Roedy:

    Let me play devil’s advocate…
    2 . Nearly all water is not used for drinking. It makes no sense to medicate it when it interferes, e.g. keeping tropical fish, doing chemistry.

    Let me play a higly selective promotor iustitiae for a second:

    The problem with tap water and tropical fish tanks is the chlorine – it kills the nitrobacter and nitrosomonas bacteria that cycle the ammonia produced by the fish which would otherwise normally be diluted in a vast body of moving water. Copper traces in modern homes’ piping does no favours to marine (saltwater) tanks esp. to corals. Phosphates cause algal blooms. List goes on…

    Also, if I ever poured tap water into a reagent or cell-media system, my lab supervisor would have ensured my body was never found…

    DOI: former (circa 2004) enthusiastic lab user of a reverse-osmosis water generator and, of late, tropical fish-keeper.



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  • 28
    OHooligan says:

    In reply to #6 by missbutton:

    I think your sarcasm was uncalled for.

    I disagree. It was screaming-out-loud called for.

    But I’m glad to see that your intent to start a discussion has actually worked. I’m now learning more about this non-issue than I think I ever wanted to know.



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  • 29
    missbutton says:

    Nasty little person. And it’s hardly a non-issue. Do you have anything constructive to add to the discussion? In reply to #28 by OHooligan:

    In reply to #6 by missbutton:

    I think your sarcasm was uncalled for.

    I disagree. It was screaming-out-loud called for.

    But I’m glad to see that your intent to start a discussion has actually worked. I’m now learning more about this non-issue than I think I ever wanted to know.



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  • In reply to #5 by Seraphor:

    Well for one thing, here in the the UK our water is flouridated with Calcium Flouride instead, which is deemed completely safe compared to Sodium Flouride used elsewhere.

    Once dissolved you have a soup of Na+ and F- ions or a soup of Ca++ and F- ions. Chemically Fluorine behaves much like Chlorine.
    This is similar to a soup of Na+ and Cl- ions or a soup of Ca++ and Cl- ions. People are trying to reduce sodium in the diet, but the amounts here are negligible. Calcium tends to be somewhat less soluable than sodium compounds. Perhaps that idea as that an overdose would be less likely to dissolve completely.

    I think what is going on is primarily marketing getting away from sodium flouride which has a reputation a rat poison. I would think in those concentrations, both would be completely soluble and therefore equivalent.



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  • When people deliberately confuse an issue, e.g. as in this case, between the difference between fluoride-free water, naturally fluoridated water and artificially fluoridated water, you have to wonder.

    1. do they truly not understand the difference?
    2. do they derive financial gain from confusing people?
    3. are they just fanatics who have decided the truth based on revelation or some other flaky mechanism, and then feel justified in lying to bolster the view?

    What harm would it do, if a man told a good strong lie for the sake of the good and for
    the Christian church… a lie out of necessity, a useful lie, a helpful lie, such lies would not be against
    God, he would accept them.

    ~ Martin Luther 1483-11-10 1546-02-18



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  • Nestle’s takes tap water, then adds a packet of minerals and through the magic of modern marketing sells it for $3 a liter, filling land fills with plastic bottles as a side effect.

    Would you support adding a similar packet of minerals to tap water with the sole goal of improving taste?

    These minerals would necessarily be safe, since they would be found in the best tasting natural waters.



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  • 36
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #23 by vitalic:

    Hi vitalic,

    Why do people use toothpaste as a counter-argument? No-one is ingesting toothpaste to the extent they drink water …

    If you put toothpaste in your mouth you will swallow some. It is probably highly variable – depending on how you rinse and how much you used to begin with, not forgetting, as Nick LaRue pointed out, that most of us use too much. But I don’t see how it is possible to avoid swallowing a very small amount every time you brush.

    The concentration of fluoride in toothpaste is about 1,500 ppm whereas most fluoridated water contains about 1 ppm. It would take some considerable experimenting to find out, but I suspect that based on these figures many people ingest more fluoride ions when they brush their teeth than when they drink tap water – even though they rinse and spit.

    Personally I would err on the side of caution, there are plenty of ways to prevent tooth decay without relying on error-prone humans to reliably dose water supplies with chemicals.

    No system has been anything like as effective as fluoridating water at preventing tooth decay. Errors in dosing are very rare and as Nick LaRue points out lessons are learned.

    Water is a chemical: H2O. Naturally occurring potable water has many chemicals in it. I don’t really understand your point of view – what are you afraid of?

    I use a filtration system because I don’t trust government bureaucracies with my health.

    Very few water systems are run directly by Government bureaucracies – the vast majority are run by companies, monitored by public health experts.

    You are perfectly free to waste resources to make your environment less healthy.

    Peace.



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  • 37
    Frank Ohsawa says:

    Ok, I have been researching “conspiracy theories” for a long time and i have come to the conclusion that Alex Jones, David Icke, Project Camelot, Project Avalon, Jordan Maxwell, George Kavassilas, Lucia Rene and all those “spiritual” guys are all fakes, or are being manipulated.
    I have not come to a definitive conclusion with fluoride but i do know that the excess of fluoride can cause fluorosis (google it), for now i no longer use toothpaste or oral-B mouthwash, instead i use clove, cinnamon, salt, my toothbrush and listerine mouthwash



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  • 38
    iain399 says:

    I don’t think there should be any debate about fluoride at all. In the first place, people don’t swish water around in their mouth when drinking a refreshing glass of water – and swallowing fluoride can hardly be a medicine for your teeth.

    Secondly, because it’s in the water and everyone’s drinking it, the idea takes hold that fluoride is 100% safe – which it isn’t – and means people rush out to buy fluoride toothpaste when the magic word “fluoride” is mentioned on TV by someone in a white lab coat. What they don’t realise is that membranes under the tongue take chemicals in your mouth and dissipate them directly into the bloodstream, and toothpaste is powerful enough chemically to be considered an industrial cleaner, which doesn’t need hazard warnings only because you’re not supposed to swallow it. But there IS a warning that if children swallow even a small amount of toothpaste (“pea sized”) you should seek medical advice immediately! How safe does this sound?

    Dr Robert Carton, who worked for the EPA from 1972 – 92 raised hell over the fraudulent standards used by the EPA to justify fluoride, and brought legal action against them. He described fluoridation as “the greatest case of scientific fraud of this century, if not of all time”. How’s that for getting away with child abuse in today’s day and age? Magnificent.

    Besides all this, well-publicised studies have already shown that countries without fluoride have as good, or better, dental health, as countries which do fluoridate their people. Differences and improvements are due to diet and frequency of dental care. Non-fluoridated Iceland and Italy even showed faster improvement in dental health over the last 30 years than fluoridated states.

    The history of fluroride is depressingly familiar – it’s a hazardous byproduct of the fertiliser business, and something too toxic to just dump in a nearby field. Business people need to make a healthy profit and managing to sell toxic waste in huge quantities must have seemed a dream come true. Especially since it is a known carcinogen, storing itself in the bones – which is why osteocarcinoma is higher among those who for some reason don’t mind being saturated with fluoride. Harvard’s recent study was the 29th, I think, to find a correlation between lower IQ and fluoridated areas.

    CCCP and Nazi camps used high concentrations of fluoride in the water to make sure their prisoners were as lethargic as possible. Sodium fluoride is a very effective rat poison because there’s no colour, no odour, no taste, and no antidote. Rats are an ideal experimental model for human drugs because they react to them much the way we do.

    I don’t think there’s even one reason to put yourself or your children through this kind of a risk, unless perhaps you’re more worried about very vocal professional “debunking” shills attacking you for being a “nutter”. In fact with all this evidence, it’s remarkable any government has got away with inflicting this completely bogus science on millions of people for so long. But then if their populations are fluoridated, it must help a lot!

    Fluroide’s success in recent decades only shows how the idea of “science” and authoritative men in white lab coats is a gigantic sham trotted out whenever a stupid idea needs to be sold to the public. Like the scientists who said smoking wasn’t dangerous, or the ones representing the NFL who now say there’s no “scientific proof” that smashing your head against a hard object has a link to degenerative brain disorders (and highly expensive legal cases of suicides among ex NFL players).

    At the top of these financial models are the tycoons, then a roomfull of lawyers, and then the corporate scientists who say and do pretty much what they’re told. But the general public see a scientist in a white coat and don’t know who’s paying for his house in the Hamptons – so the abuse of their health, and the abuse of their children, by the use of science is the norm these days.



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  • 39
    missbutton says:

    What do you mean ‘countries without fluoride’? Do you mean countries that already have enough natural fluoride in the water? It so happens that my country does not, therefore it is added to the water supply, and the statistics on improved dental health speak for themselves. Do you think chlorine shouldn’t be added to drinking water? What about iodine in salt? I’m afraid you are just the sort of person that my OP is about. The science has been done. There is no ‘debate’, just as there is no debate on the fact of evolution. Creationist think there is, but they have nothing but lies and manipulation to try to support their non-argument.
    In reply to #39 by iain399:

    I don’t think there should be any debate about fluoride at all. In the first place, people don’t swish water around in their mouth when drinking a refreshing glass of water – and swallowing fluoride can hardly be a medicine for your teeth.

    Secondly, because it’s in the water and everyone’s drinking…



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  • 40
    iain399 says:

    The problem here may be that you confuse “fluoride” which is an anion of the natural element fluorine – traces of which do appear in natural foods, and so on – with the man-made chemical added to drinking water. If so, you are not alone in this ignorance – many of the studies of “fluoride” work with this very product and base their results on it being harmless.

    It’s as if I were to label H2SO4 as “water” because it contains two molecules of hydrogen and one of oxygen, then rely on the confusion to get people to drink it. It shows only how little attention people really pay to science.

    The fluoride added to water is not fluorine (F) or its (negatively charged) anion (F-) but hydrofluoric acid, HF. It is a waste product from aluminum, steel, cement, phosphate, and nuclear weapons manufacturing. In this form, “fluoride” has no nutrient value. It is not a naturally occuring element. It is one of the most caustic industrial chemicals. In concentrated form it can actually burn flesh to the bone, and on inhalation melt the lungs so that victims drown in their own body fluids.

    The pH of HF is 2.1 – this is almost one hundred thousand times more acidic than drinking water. It should never be added to water under any circumstances unless you’re trying to kill yourself! Drinking water should be a neutral pH of around 7, which most mineral waters are. You can test this for yourself using pH strips. Fluoridated water with this acid in will test below 7 and sometimes as low as 6, which is ten times more acidic than it should be.

    A low intracellular pH is implicated in cancer. You can test your saliva pH yourself and see whether or not it goes up or down after drinking fluoridated water.. Nearly all cancer patients have a low pH. Raising pH alone is enough to prevent cancer from metastasising, which is why natural diets do so much to help cancer patients.

    So what you’re drinking when you drink HF is a low-quality crappy water, with the added curse of a chemical element that is by itself a carcinogen. Because HF stays in the bones, you can’t clear it out, and it has other toxic effects: after six months on fluoridated water, your brain and nervous system will actually never be the same again.

    Hydrofluoric acid is not something generated to make people healthy. It was not formulated to improve children’s teeth. It was not carefully worked out by altruistic researchers. It pours out of factories and is so toxic nobody knows what to do with it. It is used to refine petrol, make fluorocarbons for refridgeration units, computer screens, fluorescent light bulbs, semiconductors, plastics, weed killers, rat poison, and of course toothpaste! The residual amounts in toothpaste are then announced as a healthy additive. In fact, it’s a deadly poison!

    Inside the body, this “fluoroide” even destroys human enzymes. It’s a liquid catastrophe. So in conclusion: by non-fluoridated countries I mean countries not stupid enough to pour a man-made industrial waste into their own bodies.



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  • 42
    Seraphor says:

    That’s a lovely peice on Hydrogen Fluoride iain399, but I’m afraid you’re guilty of the same underhanded misrepresentation that you’re accusing.

    The fluoride added to water is not fluorine (F) or its (negatively charged) anion (F-) but neither is it hydrofluoric acid. It is in fact Sodium Fluoride or NaF. While it is classed as toxic in very high doses, it has well verified health benefits in controlled doses. Which is like many, many compounds that we interact with on a daily basis, for example oxygen, one of the most carcinogenic compoundsthere is.

    Just because it can be derrived from an incredibly caustic acid, does not mean it bares any resemblance to it or retains any of it’s properties. To use your own analogy, you would not claim that water (H2O) was an incredibly toxic chemical, simply because it was derrived from sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and starch.

    So your entire ramble about hydrofluoric acid was, I’m afraid, completely irrelevant.



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  • 43
    Alan4discussion says:

    In reply to #41 by iain399:

    If so, you are not alone in this ignorance – many of the studies of “fluoride” work with this very product and base their results on it being harmless.

    Yes but those are only pseudo-science quackery imaginary studies – which have nothing to do with the real world.

    Hydrofluoric acid is not something generated to make people healthy. It was not formulated to improve children’s teeth. It was not carefully worked out by altruistic researchers.

    .**.and it is not put in toothpaste or drinking water! **

    Inside the body, this “fluoroide” even destroys human enzymes. It’s a liquid catastrophe. So in conclusion: by non-fluoridated countries I mean countries not stupid enough to pour a man-made industrial waste into their own bodies.

    All right! You have demonstrated that you get your information from pseudo-science quackery, science duffer, websites, where they cannot tell sodium or calcium fluoride from hydrofluoric acid!
    (Did you ask them if they think hydrochloric acid is added to chlorinate water supplies and swimming pools – in place of sodium hypochlorite?)

    Here is some proper medical information: –
    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002420.htm

    Fluoride occurs naturally in the body as calcium fluoride. Calcium fluoride is mostly found in the bones and teeth.

    Small amounts of fluoride help reduce tooth decay. Adding fluoride to tap water (called fluoridation) helps reduce cavities in children by more than half.

    Fluorides also help maintain bone structure. Low doses of fluoride salts may be used to treat conditions that cause faster-than-normal bone loss, such as menopause.

    Fluoridated water is found in most community water systems. (Well water often does not contain enough fluoride.)

    Food prepared in fluoridated water contains fluoride. Natural sodium fluoride is in the ocean, so most seafood contains fluoride. Tea and gelatin also contain fluoride.

    Infants get fluoride through drinking breast milk or infant formulas.

    Side Effects

    A lack (deficiency) of fluoride may lead to increased cavities, and weak bones and teeth.

    Too much fluoride in the diet is very rare. Rarely, infants who get too much fluoride before their teeth have broken through the gums have changes in the enamel that covers the teeth. Faint white lines or streaks may appear, but they are usually not easy to see.

    BTW :- Our local water has been fluoridated for the last 40 years!



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  • 44
    Hideous Dwarf says:

    Fluoridation of the water supply is so obviously a wonderful idea to preserve children’s teeth and improve the health of the nation. We should be adding statins to reservoirs to cut the risk of heart disease and there must be all sorts of drugs that would help pregnant women. But why stop there? The schools are plagued by hyperactive children so why not add Ritilin, with the added advantage of calming those inclined to riot during demonstrations. Then there’s the Ibuprophen I have to take for my prolapsed disc – so much easier if it came out of the tap.

    Of course, some silly people will argue that governments should not be allowed to add drugs to water we cannot survive without for fear they might use the facility to control the people, but if we can’t trust our politicians, who can we trust?

    As it happens, I have a private water supply so it wouldn’t apply to me, but I’m not the problem, it’s other people.



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  • 45
    God fearing Atheist says:

    In reply to #41 by iain399:

    The problem here may be that you confuse “fluoride” which is an anion of the natural element fluorine – traces of which do appear in natural foods, and so on – with the man-made chemical added to drinking water. If so, you are not alone in this ignorance – many of the studies of “fluoride” work wit…

    That is bollocks. Drinking water is fluorinated with Sodium fluoride, Fluorosilicic acid, or Sodium fluorosilicate. Gibbering about Hydrofluoric acid is a red herring. You really should brush up your school chemistry before spouting nonsense on a science based website.



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  • 46
    missbutton says:

    Ok, lets just take everything out of water that makes it fit to drink, and embrace the natural typhoid epidemics. We should stop pasteurising milk (among other things) while we are about it, and cease adding iodine to salt; after all, goitres are ‘other people’s problems’. In reply to #45 by Hideous Dwarf:

    Fluoridation of the water supply is so obviously a wonderful idea to preserve children’s teeth and improve the health of the nation. We should be adding statins to reservoirs to cut the risk of heart disease and there must be all sorts of drugs that would help pregnant women. But why stop there? The…



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  • There are a couple of good reasons why these anti-fluoridisation campaigners are not entirely incorrect.

    Firstly there hasn’t been much discussion of the lizard alien thing. Lizard aliens may be the key aspect here, but no one is focussing on them.

    There may not be actual lizard aliens running the world. But people are less concerned with the actual lizard aliens than how they expect lizard alien overlords might behave. Possibly very much like the way sociopaths and psychopathic native mammalian overlords might behave. And there’s sufficient reason to believe that the word really is run by people with those personality qualities.

    And if lizard alien overlords were ever to indulge their perverse amusement by implementing an ostensibly benign policy, but which would produce the greatest and longest lived misery on their human subjects, then fluoridation of town water supplies might have been an ideal choice. If only because of its success and the resulting diversion of attention from what is now an overwhelming problem in public health.
    If not for the impact of fluoride as a cure for cavities then people would have otherwise been compelled to deal with the cause of cavities instead of a pharmacological therapy.

    Several obvious problems have emerged following fluoridation: 1. Dentists have too much credibility, own too many houses, and clutter up the weekend airspace in their private planes, 2. Pharmacological treatments have become established as the default scientific approach to all public health problems – at the expense of investment on investigating the sources and causes. 3. Sugar was allowed to become established as a staple food ingredient (compounded with the fear of fat in connection with heart disease).

    Maybe the lizard aliens have some special reason for fattening us up.



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  • 50
    Hideous Dwarf says:

    In reply to #47 by missbutton:

    Ok, lets just take everything out of water that makes it fit to drink, and embrace the natural typhoid epidemics. We should stop pasteurising milk (among other things) while we are about it, and cease adding iodine to salt; after all, goitres are ‘other people’s problems’. In reply to #45 by Hideous…

    It’s a quite long step from purifying water to remove harmful elements to adding medication to treat people whether they need it or not. Fluoride can be taken in tablet form and in other ways without forcing it on everybody and I rather like the idea of of letting people make their own choices. It’s why I’m an atheist.

    Are there any compulsory medications you would object to having added to your water supply because other people think they might be good for you?



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  • 51
    missbutton says:

    Chlorine is pretty harmful in large doses. Doesn’t that bother you? You didn’t mention iodine either. I would hardly call fluoridation ‘medication’. It’s adding a mineral that should be there anyway. We have mineral-poor soil in New Zealand. Many minerals are added to it to get it up to standard. What is the fixation on fluoride? Where is the evidence of the multitude of health problems these pests lay claim to? I mean real evidence, not ‘evidence’ from their conspiracist websites. In reply to #51 by Hideous Dwarf:

    In reply to #47 by missbutton:

    Ok, lets just take everything out of water that makes it fit to drink, and embrace the natural typhoid epidemics. We should stop pasteurising milk (among other things) while we are about it, and cease adding iodine to salt; after all, goitres are ‘other people’s probl…



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  • 52
    Alan4discussion says:

    In reply to #42 by nicolas delisle:

    floride sure its a concern but im also concerned about the rise of estrogen in the water..

    I would be more concerned about all the other contaminants which are not mentioned by anti-fluoridation groups.

    http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/drinkingwater.html



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  • 53
    missbutton says:

    Yes, I would object to specific drugs like Ritalin in the water supply, because they would only benefit a tiny group of people, if any. Fluoride is beneficial to anyone with teeth.

    In reply to #45 by Hideous Dwarf:

    Fluoridation of the water supply is so obviously a wonderful idea to preserve children’s teeth and improve the health of the nation. We should be adding statins to reservoirs to cut the risk of heart disease and there must be all sorts of drugs that would help pregnant women. But why stop there? The…



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  • 54
    missbutton says:

    Hi Stephen,
    as a matter of fact I did run my own campaign in my area and actually managed to convince the Council to retain our fluoride AFTER they had made the decision to remove it. It turned out that the AF nutters had been brow-beating them behind the scenes without the knowledge of the public. It was only after the Council announced plans to cease fluoridation that it became known, via our local newspaper. I started my own campaign of emails to the Councillors and letters to the paper, causing the Council to change its mind. This is proof that even one person can do a heck of a lot to counteract these nutty groups, but it’s also a scary reminder of how powerful those groups have become because of the apathy of the general public, and of how easily they can manipulate scientifically illiterate local body politicians. In reply to #11 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    Hi missbutton,

    If you need to battle an anti-fluoridation movement in your area you can start with their own campaign.

    I was astonished to learn that the people of Portland (Or.) recently voted against fluoridation. I looked at the Portland ‘anti’ campaign Net site. Some of their argument is bas…



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  • 55
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #39 by iain399:

    I don’t think there should be any debate about fluoride at all.

    I agree – what utter nonsense.

    In the first place, people don’t swish water around in their mouth when drinking a refreshing glass of water …

    Speak for yourself. Anyway, ingestion of low levels is how fluoridation works – your point would be?

    … and swallowing fluoride can hardly be a medicine for your teeth.

    Err, yes, again that’s exactly how it works.

    Secondly, because it’s in the water and everyone’s drinking it, the idea takes hold that fluoride is 100% safe.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – that is exactly right. Follow the link and see that in 2010, 73.9% — 204 million Americans are on community water systems that deliver fluoridated water.

    [the idea takes hold that fluoridation is safe takes hold] – which it isn’t.

    With 204 million living, healthy, examples – not including the growing numbers of millions in other countries – I beg to differ. Fluoridation is safe.

    … people rush out to buy fluoride toothpaste. What they don’t realise is that membranes under the tongue take chemicals in your mouth and dissipate them directly into the bloodstream, and toothpaste is powerful enough chemically to be considered an industrial cleaner …

    All irrelevant. Give me facts – cases, double-blind studies, statistics even.

    But there IS a warning that if children swallow even a small amount of toothpaste (“pea sized”)

    You must live in a different World. All the advice I can find on medical and dental sites run by professionals says it takes half a tube of adult strength toothpaste before ill effects can be expected?

    How safe does this sound?

    You mean how does what you wrote sound? Perfectly bonkers. (to anyone who is not iain399 he asked, okay)

    Dr Robert Carton, who worked for the EPA from 1972 – 92 raised hell over the fraudulent standards used by the EPA to justify fluoride.

    1. It is not the role the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to justify health measures – that’s the job of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

    2. The EPA’s role is to set standards and monitor the environment – including the environmental impact of human activities like farming and waste water disposal by manufacturers. As such, the EPA is responsible for setting standards and monitoring the natural occurrence of fluorides, and fluoride contamination by activities, that affect drinking water sources.

    3. The EPA’s standards therefore differ from those set by the CDC. The difference, in the case of fluorides, is a matter of entirely separate scales. The CDC sets standards for minimal exposure to fluorides that are consistent with advancing our health. The EPA sets standards for maximum safe levels of fluorides if contamination of a water supply should occur.

    4. To do its work the EPA must decide on something very tricky: What constitutes a toxic level of a naturally occurring element or compound? Oxygen, for example, is toxic in high enough levels, as are Iodine and Potassium. Yet all these things are also essential for our health. Very often the substance itself is not what makes them toxic – it’s the level of exposure.

    5. Dr. Robert Carton did, to his great credit, raise a legitimate issue regarding probable EPA fraud and fluoride contamination standards. I have read his Affidavit in full – which is available, free, on-line. At no point in his testimony did Dr. Carton refer to the practice of community water supply fluoridation for health benefits, the CDC, or CDC standards. Dr. Carton’s testimony is therefore irrelevant to any study of the safety of community water supply fluoridation. As part of his witness statement Dr. Carton gave it as his opinion that the US Federal Govt. was ignoring the problems raised by very high levels of fluoride finding their way into drinking water from contamination and poor standards setting by the EPA. This provides a rich vein for quote-mining.

    Dr. Carton is often quoted out of context by fluoridation pseudo-science advocates. I have also seen his name crudely tagged on to stories that clearly have no connection with the good Dr., and are very obviously fraudulent attempts to hoodwink the public – or comprehensive evidence that the editors of the Anti-Fluoridation Brigade’s favourite Net sites are run by people who are irredeemably ignorant and stupid (take your pick).

    [Dr. Carton] described fluoridation as “the greatest case of scientific fraud of this century, if not of all time”.

    An excellent example of said quote-mining. Thanks for that.

    Besides all this, well-publicised studies have already shown that countries without fluoride have as good, or better, dental health, as countries which do fluoridate their people.

    How fascinating. PLEASE PROVIDE LINKS! You did say:

    well publicised

    … right?

    Differences and improvements are due to diet and frequency of dental care.

    You’re right! Before we can compare country specific data, we must first remove all data that would skew the results. Where are the studies that are adjusted for changes in dental care funding and coverage, policy on dental health education, the funding of public health information, the introduction of fluoride in toothpaste – and the blind trials that use data from people given non-fluoride toothpaste and non-fluoridated water as controls – diet, naturally occurring fluorides in groundwater, and, and, and … ?

    SORRY! Sorry, they’re well publicised, I forgot.

    I can’t find them. Please share.

    The history of fluoride is depressingly familiar – it’s a hazardous by-product of the fertiliser business, and something too toxic to just dump in a nearby field.

    That statement is just so cock-eyed … I’m lost for words. Fluorides are a natural part of the environment … please help us to help you by starting from there and taking us wherever it is you were going.

    Business people need to make a healthy profit and managing to sell toxic waste in huge quantities …

    Conspiracy theory alert! Seriously; what’s with the ‘huge quantities’ angle – what’s that about? You do know that the concentration of fluorides in community water supply fluoridation is tiny, about 1 part per million, right?

    … it is a known carcinogen (osteocarcinoma, etc.)

    True – in high concentrations and long exposure to high doses. High doses meaning a level that would register to the EPA, but would be off the freaking scale as far as the CDC is concerned.

    Osteocarcinoma is higher among those who for some reason [are] being saturated with fluoride.

    There’s a clue there in the word “saturated”. Nothing to do with community water supply fluoridation here.

    Harvard’s recent study was the 29th, I think, to find a correlation between lower IQ and fluoridated areas.

    Again, this is confusing fluorides at CDC levels with fluorides at EPA levels. This is irrelevant to community water supply fluoridation.

    Hang on, I’ve been drinking fluoridated water all my life – what are you trying to say?

    CCCP and Nazi camps used high concentrations of fluoride in the water to make sure their prisoners were as lethargic as possible.

    Godwins Law: You lose. This is irrelevant to community water supply fluoridation.

    Sodium fluoride is a very effective rat poison because there’s no colour, no odour, no taste, and no antidote. Rats are an ideal experimental model for human drugs because they react to them much the way we do.

    Again, this is confusing fluorides at CDC levels with fluorides at EPA levels. This is irrelevant to community water supply fluoridation.

    I don’t think there’s even one reason to put yourself or your children through this kind of a risk…

    What risk? So far you haven’t pointed to any evidence of any risk, yet hundreds of millions of people are drinking this water and many have been doing so for more than half a century – there is no risk – QED.

    In fact with all this evidence …

    What evidence? You didn’t link to any, and although there’s a strange rumour that there is some that’s well publicised, I can’t find it.

    … it’s remarkable any government has got away with inflicting this completely bogus science on millions of people for so long.

    Those governments that have backed water fluoridation mostly studied the issue publicly. The science is solid – as I explored and linked in previous posts in this thread.

    Fluoride’s success in recent decades only shows how the idea of “science” and authoritative men in white lab coats is a gigantic sham trotted out whenever a stupid idea needs to be sold to the public

    2nd conspiracy alert!

    Like the scientists who said smoking wasn’t dangerous, or the ones representing the NFL who now say there’s no “scientific proof” that smashing your head against a hard object has a link to degenerative brain disorders (and highly expensive legal cases of suicides among ex NFL players).

    3rd conspiracy alert!

    At the top of these financial models are the tycoons, then a roomful of lawyers, and then the corporate scientists who say and do pretty much what they’re told.

    4th conspiracy alert!

    But the general public see a scientist in a white coat and don’t know who’s paying for his house in the Hamptons – so the abuse of their health, and the abuse of their children, by the use of science is the norm these days.

    5th conspiracy alert!

    Dude, get real.

    Peace.



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  • 56
    missbutton says:

    Great response Stephen,
    I also commented on one of your previous posts just before your comment here. We were posting at the same time and mine appeared first. In reply to #56 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #39 by iain399:

    I don’t think there should be any debate about fluoride at all.>
    I agree – what utter nonsense.

    In the first place, people don’t swish water around in their mouth when drinking a refreshing glass of water …

    Speak for yourself. Anyway, ingestion of low levels is how…



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  • 57
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #57 by missbutton:

    Great response Stephen,

    Thank you.

    I’m not entirely convinced that iain399 isn’t a Troll, but I couldn’t take the risk that my favourite site for the promotion of reason would be forever vandalised by such utter, unmitigated, tosh. Example:

    swallowing fluoride can hardly be a medicine for your teeth.

    Maybe he treats his headaches with an aspirin up his nose?

    Good luck battling the lack of science literacy. I wish one person could make a difference on freedom of speech.

    Peace.



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  • Just when you though the debate was over, Harvard combined 27 studies and found strong indications that fluoride may adversely affect cognitive development in children.



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  • 59
    missbutton says:

    Nice try. That article is over a year old and the studies have been thoroughly refuted since then.
    http://theness.com/neurologicablog/index.php/anti-fluoride-propaganda-as-news/

    Article from Scientific American
    http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/overthinking-it/2013/05/22/why-portland-is-wrong-about-water-fluoridation/

    (Someone posted a comment showing me how to post a link, but it seems to have gone.)
    In reply to #59 by Roedy:

    Just when you though the debate was over, Harvard combined 27 studies and found strong indications that fluoride may adversely affect cognitive development in children.



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  • 60
    Vaughan says:

    Why don’t the people who want to drink fluoride just get it from toothpaste, or a pill, or some other source, rather than it being forced on EVERYONE? That way, everyone gets what they want. People who don’t want it don’t have to have it, and people who do want it, can still get it.
    Some people may suggest water filters for people who don’t want to drink fluoride, but the burden should be on the people who want it, not the people who don’t it.

    It may be good for us (I haven’t researched it to be honest), but broccoli is good for us and yet the consumption of broccoli doesn’t get forced onto a mass population, does it?



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  • 61
    kpkorba says:

    First, I’d like to address your labeling of people as “conspiracy theorists”. The extreme irrationality of those who attack “conspiracy theories” has been ably exposed by Communications professors Ginna Husting and Martin Orr of Boise State University. In a 2007 peer-reviewed article entitled “Dangerous Machinery: ‘Conspiracy Theorist’ as a Transpersonal Strategy of Exclusion,” they wrote: “If I call you a conspiracy theorist, it matters little whether you have actually claimed that a conspiracy exists or whether you have simply raised an issue that I would rather avoid… By labeling you, I strategically exclude you from the sphere where public speech, debate, and conflict occur.”

    But back to the point, people get enough fluoride these days in toothpaste and other products. There is no need to ingest it, and the dosage cannot be controlled when it’s in water people drink. It costs lots of money to fluoridate water, it’s not necessary, and it’s possibly even dangerous….we don’t know for sure. Here’s another tidbit I found online: “a systematic review of the literature commissioned by the British Government (“York Review”) found that, under current standards for what constitutes good medical evidence, there has not yet been a single high-quality study demonstrating fluoridation’s benefits — despite over 50 years of fluoridating water.”



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  • 63
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #62 by kpkorba:

    Hi KP,

    As the person who has used the word conspiracy more than any other I would like to make a few things clear.

    The extreme irrationality of those who attack “conspiracy theories” has been ably exposed by Communications professors Ginna Husting and Martin Orr of Boise State University.

    I could not find a full text version of the paper. No doubt, in the full text the word irrational appeared in that context? Forgive me for being curious, but what do they actually say?

    … they wrote:

    If I call you a conspiracy theorist, it matters little whether you have actually claimed that a conspiracy exists or whether you have simply raised an issue that I would rather avoid… By labelling you, I strategically exclude you from the sphere where public speech, debate, and conflict occur.”

    True, Husting and Orr make that claim. However, that was not my intention and I remain confused that anyone could interpret my comments that way. I visit this Site daily precisely because I enjoy a real, rational, debate. Nevertheless, it is not my position to judge the clarity of my conversation and I therefore apologize, unreservedly, to anyone who may have felt excluded by my comments.

    By-the-by, for a paper written in 2007 it has collected precious few citations – I could find only one, and I didn’t follow it up so it may even be a counetr-argument. Regardless, this is a paper that has not set the World alight and I suggest to you that it is very thin ice indeed on which to build your argument.

    Husting and Orr also said:

    Specifically, when I call you a “conspiracy theorist”, I can turn the tables on you: Instead of responding to a question, concern, or challenge, I twist the machinery of interaction so that you, not I, are now called to account.

    • That was my intention. I had provided evidence for my argument. My Interlocutor had not. I therefore believe, and continue to believe, that I was fully justified in using the word conspiracy.

    This was the tactic I was employing – I was asking another Poster to provide evidence for his/her claims. I’m still waiting.

    I’m usually the first person to say (and I’m about to do it again): Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you … But when it comes to theories of things like fluoridation we really need to ask ourselves if the projected motivations stand up – are they plausible?

    I would ask that readers note a few additional points:

    1. At no point do I accuse anyone of being a Conspiracy Theorist. If you think I did, re-read my posts. I did repeatedly use the phrase conspiracy alert. I was alerting a Poster to the possibility that they were making claims that are incoherent and unsupported by evidence – and which therefore have every appearance of being a paranoid delusion, as opposed to factual and objective.

    2. I have repeatedly and politely, and in clear simple words, asked any Poster who I have alerted to possible conspiracy theology that they need to provide evidence for their arguments to be taken seriously. I’m still waiting.

    3. Conspiracy Theories are evidence of logical fallacies in thinking., and where I used the word conspiracy there was evidence in abundance.

    … people get enough fluoride these days in toothpaste and other products. There is no need to ingest it, and the dosage cannot be controlled when it’s in water people drink.

    I – and most people at this Site – are not interested in your unsupported opinion. Give us facts – cases, double-blind studies, statistics …

    Wait, didn’t I already ask for that at some point … oh yes, a week ago. I, missbutton, Alan4Discussion and others have provided evidence that fluoridation of community water supplies works. It’s your turn.

    It costs lots of money to fluoridate water …

    The CDC and the University of Georgia beg to differ with you. Their study found that:

    … the annual per-person cost savings in fluoridated communities ranged from $16 to nearly $19

    Your evidence please, KP.

    … it’s not necessary …

    True. It’s not ‘necessary’. We could all just leave our teeth to fall out.

    … and it’s possibly even dangerous …

    Again, facts please.

    … we don’t know for sure.

    Yes we do. As missbutton said: visit the links supplied.

    … a systematic review of the literature commissioned by the British Government (“York Review”)

    Yes, a review – no new evidence. A meta-analysis of previous studies which has a Home Page which says: Significant new research evidence is likely to have become available since [publication].

    Nevertheless, as you cited it, let’s read it:

    • The best available evidence suggests that fluoridation of drinking water supplies does reduce caries prevalence

    • The best available evidence from studies following withdrawal of water fluoridation indicates that caries prevalence increases

    • In those studies completed after 1974, a beneficial effect of water fluoridation was still evident in spite of the assumed exposure to non-water fluoride in the populations studied.

    • Dental fluorosis was the most widely and frequently studied of all negative effects. Observer bias may be of particular importance in studies assessing fluorosis. Efforts to control for the effects of potential confounding factors, or reducing potential observer bias were uncommon.

    Or to put that another way, the Review Board found it difficult to find evidence that community water supply fluoridation leads directly to fluorosis because they found problems with the studies that claimed this.

    • Using a qualitative method of analysis … there is no clear association of hip fracture with water fluoridation. The evidence on other fractures is similar. Overall, the findings of studies of bone fracture effects showed small variations around the no effect mark.

    • There is no clear association between water fluoridation and overall cancer incidence and mortality. This was also true for osteosarcoma and bone/joint cancers. Only two studies considered thyroid cancer and neither found a statistically significant association with water fluoridation.

    • Overall, the studies examining other possible negative effects provide insufficient evidence on
      any particular outcome to permit confident conclusions.

    • The assessment of natural versus artificial water fluoridation effects is greatly limited due to the lack of studies making this comparison.

    So there we have it KP – the York University Review basically supports fluoridation.

    [The York University Review] found that, under current standards for what constitutes good medical evidence, there has not yet been a single high-quality study demonstrating fluoridation’s benefits …

    Yes it did. That is a lie, as my direct quotes from their final report show.

    … despite over 50 years of fluoridating water.

    You can’t have it both ways KP. Either we’ve been drinking fluoridated water for over 50 years, or it’s not safe. Never mind the millions of people who would have to be in on such a fraud, and who would have to agree with it, for it to exist – what about the hundreds of millions who would have been duped into doping themselves and their kids but never noticed any symptoms.

    I could not find your quote – but did find the above bulleted evidence in the Review which, unlike Husting and Orr, is available, free, in full, on-line.

    To be fair, the Review Board did have this to say:

    Given the level of interest surrounding the issue of public water fluoridation, it is surprising to find that little high quality research has been undertaken.

    They also, repeatedly in their Final Report, complained about the low quality of research into fluoridation issues such as cancer and fluorosis but please note that this cuts both ways.

    Peace.



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  • 64
    Hideous Dwarf says:

    In reply to #61 by Vaughan:

    Why don’t the people who want to drink fluoride just get it from toothpaste, or a pill, or some other source, rather than it being forced on EVERYONE? That way, everyone gets what they want. People who don’t want it don’t have to have it, and people who do want it, can still get it.
    Some people ma…

    That, Vaughan, is precisely the point and why compulsory fluoridation of water supplies is wrong. It’s about choice and not having others make our choices for us, not governments or medicos or the well-meaning protectors of our health. Haven’t we had enough of the from religion over the millennia? The trouble with all these wonderful drugs is that the best of scientists sometimes make mistakes and we get Thalidomide, Vioxx, Avandia, Rezulin, and more, all wonder drugs that turned out to be not so wonderful after all. And missbutton is wrong, the US Food & Drug Administration lists fluoride as a drug for medical treatment, not in the same league as water purifiers. Give the tablets away free, and the fluoride toothpaste, but leave our drinking water alone. I have a right to it and others have no right to abuse it, however good their intentions.



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  • 65
    missbutton says:

    Anti-fluoridationists are a tiny minority. Most people want their children and themselves to have good, strong teeth. Fluoride in toothpaste and tablets doesn’t have anywhere near the effect that having it in the water supply does. As I’ve pointed out, you aren’t concerned about any of the other things added to drinking water, like chlorine for instance. Why fixate on fluoride? If you don’t mind having rotten teeth then why don’t YOU just get a water purifier? I can imagine which sites you have been looking at, but fluoride is not a drug or a medicine; it’s a mineral. In reply to #65 by Hideous Dwarf:

    In reply to #61 by Vaughan:

    Why don’t the people who want to drink fluoride just get it from toothpaste, or a pill, or some other source, rather than it being forced on EVERYONE? That way, everyone gets what they want. People who don’t want it don’t have to have it, and people who do want it, can…



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  • HI I would like mention as has been already done so that it is scientifically proven that consuming fluoride after it has been swallowed offers hardly any benefits . I my self live in Queensland Australia on a farm and have always brushed my teeth and visited the dentist very rarely im 30 and my teeth are in great shape we have tank water which we do not add fluoride to which im glad we have the choice of . As has also been mentioned and scientificaly proven humans have a tendancy to occasionaly make mistakes as is what happened 4 months after bringing mass flurodation into QLD and there was an error in the delivery of the chemical which is classed deadlier than lead which im sure people could agree the romans didn’t suffer from (and they weren’t eating the pipes neither 🙂

    heres a news article link

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/nation/fluoride-overdose-a-triple-failure/story-e6frg6nf-1225712788607

    sry i know not how to do a hyperlink either but wish all a healthy and happy day



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  • We must speak out for the most vulnerable; our children. What a spine-chilling reminder of how vital it is to have a well-educated population. The less educated we are, the more we will be at the mercy of any pushy, noisy and manipulative group that comes along. Imagine having the ‘Theory of Flat Earth’ being taught in science classes. especialy considering they dont get much of a say and that babies receive no benifit at all .

    Missbutton i stole a bit of your story it was fitting hope you are cool with that much appreciated.



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  • 68
    missbutton says:

    No, I’m not ‘cool’ with that because you haven’t used any quotation marks, and I don’t know what your point is.In reply to #68 by wazza:

    We must speak out for the most vulnerable; our children. What a spine-chilling reminder of how vital it is to have a well-educated population. The less educated we are, the more we will be at the mercy of any pushy, noisy and manipulative group that comes along. Imagine having the ‘Theory of Flat Ea…



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  • 70
    missbutton says:

    I did post it in the pseudo-science section. What are you talking about?In reply to #70 by Carney3:

    Why was this posted in the atheism section rather than the pseudo-science section?



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  • 71
    Alan4discussion says:

    In reply to #67 by wazza:

    HI I would like mention as has been already done so that it is scientifically proven that consuming fluoride after it has been swallowed offers hardly any benefits .

    This is nonsense! Our water has had added fluoride or 40 years and numerous studies show its benefits.

    My link @ #44Alan4discussion on this discussion shows the leading expert medical advice on the subject.



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  • 72
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #65 by Hideous Dwarf:

    Hi Hideous,

    I’m having real difficulty understanding your post – could you please explain a couple of things:

    That … is precisely the point and why compulsory fluoridation of water supplies is wrong. It’s about choice and not having others make our choices for us, not governments or medicos or the well-meaning protectors of our health.

    No-one is limiting your freedom:

    • You can still choose to filter your water. Because fluoridation of community water supplies is far cheaper than distribution by any other method (see previously provided link to study), surely it makes more sense to distribute it to everyone and let those who choose to have water without fluoride, pay for its removal?

    • Fluoridating water supplies protects innocents who would otherwise suffer from lack of fluoride – for example children with parents who are ignorant, stupid, lax – or all three. This is a major advantage, no?

    • Dental health has a significant impact on well being. A happier individual = a happier society. If you insist on not fluoridating the community water supply you’re making a choice for me – you’re telling me I have to stop living in such a happy place! STOP! Give me back MY FREEDOM to live in a better place.

    Haven’t we had enough of the from religion over the millennia?

    I fail to see the connection. Could you describe that for me please?

    The trouble with all these wonderful drugs is that the best of scientists sometimes make mistakes and we get Thalidomide, Vioxx, Avandia, Rezulin, and more, all wonder drugs that turned out to be not so wonderful after all.

    What drug?

    • Fluorides, as repeatedly pointed out in many previous posts in this thread, are naturally occurring minerals often found to occur in potable water without human intervention. Perhaps Nature is wrong – we should filter all minerals from our water supplies and tell consumers that they now have the ‘freedom’ to put them back in? As much, or as little as you like?

    • After well over half a century, and 100s of millions of lifetime drinkers, of fluoridated water there is one thing we can definitely say about fluoridated community water supplies – they’re safe. What was it about the evidence supplied in previous posts that you did not understand?

    … the US Food & Drug Administration lists fluoride as a drug for medical treatment …

    Where? I looked, couldn’t find it. I’m not saying your wrong, Hideous, in higher doses (far higher than the levels advised by the CDC for community water supplies), it may well be used as a medical treatment. Even if that is true, I don’t understand what your gripe is?

    • I did find this page, which clearly spells out the FDA’s scientifically based position on the positive effects of fluoridation, and their approval of three positive health claims made for fluoridation to be used with fluoride-containing consumer products.

    • As the FDA is involved, consumer products are being monitored and overseen by a third party. What is your problem exactly?

    [water fluoridation is not treated by the FDA as being] … not in the same league as water purifiers.

    It’s not the FDA’s job, it’s the CDC’s – see my previous post on this.

    Give the tablets away free …

    I didn’t understand this comment Hideous: There is no free lunch. Tablets cost money, certifying and regularly inspecting tablet-making facilities cost money, distribution costs money … where did the “free” come from?

    There’s a reason water is piped to everyone, why we don’t go down to the corner shop with a wheelbarrow full of barrels every time we want to shower: Cost.

    [drinking water] … I have a right to it and others have no right to abuse it, however good their intentions.

    As above, I fail to see any abuse?

    Peace.



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  • 73
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #68 by wazza:

    We must speak out for the most vulnerable; our children.

    Err … yes …

    FLUORIDATE ALL COMMUNITY WATER SUPPLIES NOW!

    That about covers it – right?

    Peace.



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  • 74
    fishhead says:

    YES!!! That’s one of the few things that I agree with as far as the government is concerned. Otherwise we’ll have a generation of false teeth abusers



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  • 75
    zonotrichia says:

    I don’t know much about fluoride or its alleged dangers, but my city doesn’t have fluoridated water, and our grown kids had only two cavities between three of them during their entire childhood/adolescence, so I don’t really see why it is needed. I’m perfectly open to fluoridated water if it is the cheapest and least intrusive way to solve an actual problem, but is it?



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  • 76
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #76 by zonotrichia:

    Hi Zonotrichia,

    It would be very helpful if you could please read previous posts before asking a question like this at the end of a long thread.

    [paraphrase] … is fluoridated water … [addressing] an actual problem?

    Yes. Fluoridated water is effective for preventing dental caries – tooth decay. Fluoridated water creates low levels of fluoride in saliva, which reduces the rate at which tooth enamel de-mineralizes and increases the rate at which it re-mineralizes. See previous posts for links.

    [paraphrase] … is fluoridated water … the cheapest … way to solve [this] problem?

    Yes, see previous posts for the link.

    [paraphrase] … is fluoridated water … the least intrusive way to solve [the] problem?

    Yes, as previously explored.

    By asking your question at the end – without referring to the previous posts where your question is answered in detail – you leave a casual visitor with the impression that these questions have not been addressed which they have, comprehensively.

    Peace.



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  • FLUORIDATE ALL COMMUNITY WATER SUPPLIES NOW!

    But why?

    I am not against water flouridation, but I do find it to be a vast hammer to crack a very small nut. Why add flouride to water when the majority goes down the toilet, down the plughole, or on the lawn?? In my guestimation, only 0.000000000001% of this fluridated water actually gets into your body. Isn’t this just a huge waste of time and effort?

    Why not add flouride to breakfast cereals or bread? – surely there are more targeted methods of gaining your daily dose of flouride.

    .



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  • 78
    Dubhlinneach says:

    In reply to #62 by kpkorba:

    First, I’d like to address your labeling of people as “conspiracy theorists”. The extreme irrationality of those who attack “conspiracy theories” has been ably exposed by Communications professors Ginna Husting and Martin Orr of Boise State University. In a 2007 peer-reviewed article entitled “Dang…

    Evidence is rejected by conspiracy nutters when it does not confirm their paranoia. Like a lawyer in a courtroom who is confronted by incontrovertible evidence, they ignore the evidence that does not suit their case and try to discredit the witness instead. With gullible juries, open to emotional manipulation, they often do win, sadly.

    Those who respect science and facts need look no further than Ireland where there is a near perfect case study available. Since 1960, the water supply in the Republic of Ireland has been flouridated. In Northern Ireland, most councils do not flouridate water supplies. Dental caries in children is 40% higher in Northern Ireland. There are no significant differences in culture, diet, or lifestyle between the two jurisdictions.



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  • 79
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #78 by raffy:

    Hi Raffy,

    Why add flouride to water when the majority goes down the toilet, down the plughole, or on the lawn?

    I already covered this question. See Comment #64

    … Scroll to:The CDC and the University of Georgia … [etc.], and follow the link.

    Peace.



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  • Why add flouride to water when the majority goes down the toilet, down the plughole, or on the lawn?
    I already covered this question. See Comment #64

    No you did not. “It works” is not evidence, nor an answer.
    You provided no cost-benefit analysis of the benefits of targeted fluoridation, as opposed to ‘wanton’ fluoridation using a wildly profligate scatter-gun technique. It would seem axiomatic that targeted fluoridation would not only be cheaper, it would negate the many complaints of the anti-fluoridation brigade. And the government could add incentive by canceling the dental insurance of anyone that does not use the fluoridated products.



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  • As you said in your 1st line ” We have a major problem here with a very vocal group of nutters ” the only nutters i see on here are the ones wanting to mass medicate the population with out consent . ” Heil hitler ” ring any bells



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  • 82
    Peter Grant says:

    In reply to #82 by wazza:

    The population is largely composed of idiots who don’t know what’s good for them, this is not a suppression of their epistemic liberties.



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  • 83
    Martin Hogbin says:

    Treating this issue as being similar to creationism of flat Earthism is as bad as the activities of the creationists themselves. There is an important issue of principle at stake here which is that of compulsory mass medication.

    In this particular case it seems to me that the benefits of fluoridation far outweigh the potential and actual negative effects. We have long experience of fluoridation and no long-term harm seems to have been discovered but there is still an important principle at stake. We have to ask ourselves to what degree is it acceptable to medicate people without their express consent. I do not believe that there is a clear or simple answer to this question. I was compulsorily vaccinated against smallpox and consider this was a good thing but where do we stop? Should we lace bread with statins?

    This is not a black and white issue with a bunch of lunatics on one side, it is a subject that benefits from sane and logical discussion rather than sensationalising and polarisation.



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  • 84
    bobble says:

    In reply to #84 by Martin Hogbin:

    Treating this issue as being similar to creationism of flat Earthism is as bad as the activities of the creationists themselves. There is an important issue of principle at stake here which is that of compulsory mass medication.

    In this particular case it seems to me that the benefits of fluoridat…

    This is a very informative video with credible participants https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sh-oeu2L8yM Many would be interested in RD’s view of this, a very serious topic.



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  • 85
    Dubhlinneach says:

    Martin Hogbin (20 oct. 10.05 a.m.) wrote:

    “We have to ask ourselves to what degree is it acceptable to medicate people without their express consent”.

    But it is not medication. Medication is given to treat an illness or disease. Fluoride is a preventative public health measure. Its purpose is to prevent conditions arising which may require medical or dental treatment. Chlorine is also added to the public water supply everywhere. It is not a medication but it prevents typhoid.



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  • 86
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #81 by raffy:

    Hi raffy,

    Why add fluoride to water when the majority goes down the toilet, down the plughole, or on the lawn?

    I already covered this question. See Comment #64

    No you did not. “It works” is not evidence, nor an answer.

    I provided evidence. The link has since been changed at CDC, so here is a refresh.

    You provided no cost-benefit analysis of the benefits of targeted fluoridation …

    As you appear to have difficulty following links and/or reading text here is the quote:

    … under typical conditions, the annual per-person cost savings in fluoridated communities ranged from $16 in very small communities (20,000)

    The full article is worth reading as it covers all your concerns.

    as opposed to ‘wanton’ fluoridation …

    Wanton: (Of a cruel or violent action) deliberate and unprovoked

    Please provide evidence that the provision of a health benefit delivered universally to a community is a wanton act.

    … fluoridation using a wildly profligate ….

    If you have evidence to counter the above, I’ve been waiting nearly a year?

    … [fluoridation of water community water supplies is a] scatter-gun technique

    Presumably, by this, you mean to suggest that the fluoridation of community water supplies is random and haphazard in its range?

    If you could please explain the difference between broad and universally applicable – and how that equates to haphazard, I might be in a position to respond. You offer no evidence, no logical argument, just noise.

    It would seem axiomatic that targeted fluoridation …

    On what factual basis do you claim to know that fluoridation requires targeting?

    … targeted fluoridation would not only be cheaper …

    Again: Evidence to counter the above please.

    … the Government could add incentive by cancelling the dental insurance of anyone that does not use … fluoridated products.

    If I understood you correctly your saying that it is preferable that the Government acts through subversive arm-twisting as opposed to simply and openly providing a cheap health benefit? Why?

    Peace.



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  • 87
    Stephen of Wimbledon says:

    In reply to #84 by Martin Hogbin:

    Hi Martin,

    There is an important issue of principle at stake here which is that of compulsory mass medication.

    I’m sorry, I’m thick, what basic truth, law, or natural assumption is violated by the idea of supplying a universal health benefit which not only lowers overall health costs, it also delivers to the vulnerable who would otherwise lose out?

    In addition, even if we were to give you your unsupported assumption that some general rule is broken by delivering fluoridated community water supplies, how is it not outweighed by the principles of:

    • Assist others wherever we can; and

    • The happiness of others directly contributes to your happiness?

    … but there is still an important principle at stake.

    Which one?

    We have to ask ourselves to what degree is it acceptable to medicate …

    As already pointed out, by Dubhlinneach, Comment #86, this is not a form of medication. At worst it might, only might, be comparable with a form of dietary supplement. Many dietary supplements bought and sold every day, of course, have no scientific basis. Meanwhile some dietary ingredients in processed food – I.e. mechanically added – have, at best, uncertain effects. Fluoridated water has proven benefits and except in a minuscule minority, whom we can protect, is a universal benefit in terms of health happiness and health costs.

    I see no question to answer.

    [delivering fluoridated water to ] … people without their express consent.

    1. Not true. Communities are typically consulted.

    2. I know of no record of a water company delivering fluoridated water in secret.

    3. People are free to filter their water.

    4. Some people receive water which does not have fluoride added by the Water Company – but it is still fluoridated because of the geology associated with the source. Are these people receiving fluoridated water against their will. Yes. Do they protest. No.

    I do not believe that there is a clear or simple answer to this question.

    Then you are being spectacularly unclear about why ?

    I was compulsorily vaccinated against smallpox and consider this was a good thing but where do we stop?

    That would depend on the unnamed principle that has been so outrageously violated.

    Should we lace bread with statins?

    No, because not everyone is subject to heightened risks associated with high cholesterol. Everyone is at risk of tooth decay – even those on the most tooth-friendly diets.

    This is not a black and white issue …

    I beg to differ.

    … it is a subject that benefits from sane and logical discussion rather than sensationalising and polarisation.

    Agreed. Your point would be?

    Peace.



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  • 88
    Steven007 says:

    Stephen, it’s taken me a long time to come around to this post but your debunking of iain399 was one of the best and most comprehensive take downs I’ve seen – nice work!

    In reply to #56 by Stephen of Wimbledon:

    In reply to #39 by iain399:

    I don’t think there should be any debate about fluoride at all.

    I agree – what utter nonsense.

    In the first place, people don’t swish water around in their mouth when drinking a refreshing glass of water …

    Speak for yourself. Anyway, ingestion of low levels is how…



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  • 89
    Galaxian says:

    In reply to OP by missbutton:

    We have a major problem here with a very vocal group of nutters who are pressuring District Councils to have fluoride removed from the drinking water….

    That’s an arrogant, dictatorial OP to a thread, isn’t it?

    So, people who don’t want to be treated like farm animals, who want to have the power of consent over what is compulsorily fed to them, who want to consult a doctor when deciding on the necessity and the dosage of a medicine … we’re now “Nutters”, “hypochondriacs”, & “unscientific” ??? Might be time to take a look in the mirror.

    And if anyone has said, on this thread, that we can drink from another water source, I reply, why should we? Why should we, a) pay for the “elixir of life” to be put into our water supply, then, b) pay again for expensive equipment to remove it… but only at home, since we’d have to take bottles with us everywhere else, and beg cafes & restaurants to make our tea or coffee using only our bottle of water? … And all based on your say so, telling us what medication is sooo good for us that we must take it! ;-(



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  • 90
    Galaxian says:

    In reply to #14 by missbutton:

    …The same kind of people were opposed to the pasteurisation of milk when it first came into practise.
    As far as the sugary drinks go, I can never understand why parents do this to their children. Children actually like water. There is no need to give them anything else to drink….

    More of the same attitude, namely: “The same kind of people”. A mendacious broad brush vilification of entire cohorts of people who probably disagree on as many points (or more) than they agree on.

    Let this “same kind of people” ignoramus (moi) propose a really radical, impossibly difficult, laughable, tin-foil-hat solution to your alleged problem of tooth decay and your alleged fluoride solution to its cure:

    a) Use fluoridated toothpaste, so that only the teeth are exposed to the chemical, not the entire body.

    b) If you demand exposing all your organs to fluoride, then YOU pay for it & get a bottle of fluoride tablets, so you only expose yourself, not the rest of us “nutters”, “hypochondriacs”, & “unscientific” rabble, who, due to being that kind of undesirable probably deserve to die anyway… don’t we?



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