Fluoride to save nation’s teeth

October 29, 2008 at 2:12 pm

Health officials have called for an extension to water fluoridation schemes as part of a plan to help reduce tooth decay in young children. If successful, fluoride supplements could be added to water supplies in large parts of Southampton and Cumbria.

Critics of the scheme are afraid that adding fluoride to public water supplies could result in an increase of fluorosis (teeth discolouration), despite the fact that much of North and Central England has been drinking fluoridated water for some time with no ill effects.

The ‘Hampshire against Fluoridation Group’ believes that fluoride is a “vicious, nasty poison” that can bring about a plethora of health problems, including irritable bowel syndrome, rashes, and nausea. Principal on their list of gripes is a growing concern about whether fluoride accumulates in the body.

Public opinion of fluoridation schemes has been consistently good, with questionnaires often returning results of 65 – 75% in favour. The British Dental Association (BDA) has also been a vocal proponent of the plans but unless the government can produce conclusive evidence that fluoride has no harmful effects on the body, the scheme will continue to face opposition.

Unfortunately, the nay-sayers aren’t just worried; they’re terrified. Some groups believe that fluoridation schemes mark the start of a move towards clandestine medical operations whereby the government can medicate the population from behind closed doors. Brian Donohoe, a Labour MP for Central Ayrshire, is a vociferous opponent of the plans: “I don’t think anything should be added to the water as a medicine because it’s the beginning of the end. What’s to stop the government adding other things as medicine?”

The British Fluoridation Society wants to add fluoride supplements to an additional 20% of UK water sources, bringing the total up to 30% overall.

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One response to “Fluoride to save nation’s teeth”

  1. Alison Finlay says:

    Can anyone advise me of the places at which Southern Water adds its chemicals to the existing water supplies?

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