So how did adding fluoride into our daily consumables begin. After so many years of its implementation where are we now. Are we all better for it or have we all been manipulated by unscrupulous individuals, what are we to believe.
The discovery during the ﬁrst half of the 20th century of the link between natural ﬂuoride, adjusted ﬂuoride levels in drinking water and reduced dental caries prevalence proved to be a stimulus for worldwide on-going research into the role of ﬂouride in improving oral health.
The effect of the widespread presence of ﬂuoride in its various forms in different environments has been investigated in depth over the last 20 years. Summaries of these investigations have been published (Camargo 2003; International Programme on Chemical Safety 2002; SCHER Report 2011).
Studies of ﬂuoridation programmes have conﬁrmed their safety and their effectiveness in controlling dental caries. Major advances in our knowledge of how ﬂuoride impacts the caries process have led to the development, assessment of effectiveness and promotion of other ﬂuoride vehicles including salt, milk, tablets, toothpaste, gels and varnishes. In 1993, the World Health Organization convened an Expert Committee to provide authoritative information on the role of ﬂuorides in the promotion of oral health throughout the world (WHO TRS 846, 1994).
Financial support for research into the development of these new ﬂuoride strategies has come from many sources including government health departments as well as international and national grant agencies. In addition, the unique role which industry has played in the development, formulation, assessment of effectiveness and promotion of the various ﬂuoride vehicles and strategies is noteworthy.
Is Fluoride Beneficial
Fluoride is beneficial to teeth because it helps to:
– rebuild (remineralize) weakened tooth enamel
– slow down the loss of minerals from tooth enamel
– reverse early signs of tooth decay
– prevent the growth of harmful oral bacteria
When bacteria in your mouth break down sugar and carbs, they produce acids that eat away at the minerals in your tooth enamel. This loss of minerals is called demineralization and weakened tooth enamel leaves your teeth vulnerable to bacteria that cause cavities.
Fluoride helps to remineralize your tooth enamel, which can prevent cavities and reverse early signs of tooth decay.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the average number of missing or decaying teeth in 12-year-old children in the United States dropped by 68 percent from the late 1960s through the early 1990s. This followed the introduction to, and expansion of, fluoridated water in communities, and the addition of fluoride to toothpastes and other dental products.
Fluoride has been named as one of the industrial chemicals causing brain damage to hundreds of thousands of people around the world in an open access scientific review of data examining neuro-behavioral effects including autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), dyslexia, and other brain disorders – but this is just confirmation for what many have known for decades.(www.naturalblaze.com).
Approximately 90% of the ﬂuoride ingested each day is absorbed from the alimentary tract, with higher proportions from liquids than from solids. The half-time for absorption is approximately 30 minutes, hence peak plasma concentrations usually occur within 30-60 minutes. Absorption across the oral mucosa is limited and probably accounts for less than 1% of the daily intake. Absorption from the stomach occurs readily and is inversely related to the pH of the gastric contents, and most of the remaining ﬂuoride that enters the intestine will be absorbed rapidly. High concentrations of dietary calcium and other cations that form insoluble complexes with ﬂuoride can reduce ﬂuoride absorption from the gastrointestinal tract (Buzalaf and Whitford, 2011).
At the 2007 WHO World Health Assembly, a resolution was passed that universal access to ﬂuoride for caries prevention was to be part of the basic right to human health. There are three basic ﬂuoride delivery methods for caries prevention; community based (ﬂuoridated water, salt and milk), professionally administered (ﬂuoride gels, varnishes) and selfadministered (toothpastes and mouth-rinses). It is important to note that combinations of different methods are in use in many communities throughout the world. In a recent review of ﬂuoride use in twenty Asian countries the diversity of approach was evident.
Fluoride is added to the water supply at a level of 1 milligram per litre (mg/L) in line with the National Health and Medical Research Council recommendations. One milligram per litre is 1 part per million. The National Health and Medical Research Council recommend a fluoridation range of 0.6-1.1 mg/L.
Young Children and Brushing
There are common recommendations on brushing behaviour that are based on expert opinions and consensus rather than on firm evidence: Tooth brushing should be conducted so each tooth surface is reached and brushing should exceed 1 min, also in preschool children. Children should avoid rinsing with a lot of water afterwards. Children’s teeth should be brushed using either a soft manual or power toothbrush. High fluoride toothpaste
One problem with young children’s use of toothpaste is that they swallow some paste with a subsequent risk of fluorosis (Wong et al. 2011). Fluoride toothpaste may be responsible for up to 80% of the “optimal” total daily intake of fluoride (Mejare 2018) and the first 3 years of life seems most critical. Therefore, parents must be strongly advised to apply an age-related amount of toothpaste and assist/supervise tooth brushing until at least 7 years of age.
To support parents and caregivers to apply the right amount of toothpaste (grain of rice or pea size), manufacturers, public health institutions and national societies are encouraged to provide clear visual instructions on toothpaste packaging and in brushing instructions. Toothpaste with a lower concentration than 1000 ppm can be considered for young children regularly exposed to other sources of fluoride. However, the evidence for these low fluoride concentration toothpastes of less than 1000 ppm for the prevention of dental caries is limited (Walsh et al. 2019).
Fluoride Metabolism and Excretion
- Absorption of ﬂuoride from the stomach occurs readily and is inversely related to the pH of the gastric contents. Most of the ﬂuoride not absorbed from the stomach will be absorbed from the intestine.
- About 10% of the daily ﬂuoride intake is not absorbed from the gastro-intestinal tract and elimination of absorbed ﬂ uoride occurs almost exclusively via the kidneys.
- Fasting plasma ﬂuoride concentrations in healthy young or middle-aged adults expressed as µmol/L are roughly equal, numerically, to the ﬂuoride concentration in drinking-water expressed as mg/L. For example, if the water ﬂuoride concentration is 1.0 mg/L then the plasma concentration would be approximately 1.0 µmol/L (or 0.019 mg/L).
- Approximately 99% of ﬂuoride in the body is associated with calciﬁ ed tissues.
- The proportion of ingested ﬂuoride retained in the body (i.e. the balance) is approximately 55% in children and 36% in adults.
Dr. Phillipe Grandjean and Philip J. Landrigan, MD conclude in a paper published in the medical journal, the Lancet, that the root causes of the present global pandemic of neurodevelopmental disordersare hidden. They argue that genetic components of our health affect about 30 percent of the cases of neurological disarray, but unnamed environmental exposures are involved in causation, in some cases probably by interacting with genetically inherited predispositions. One of the chemicals which interfaces with our genes that they name is fluoride.
Just a few years ago, Harvard scientists also found that fluoride in very small amounts was lowering children’s IQ scores – but when you see the recently declassified documents linking fluoride production to the A bomb, it will really make you question all the propaganda about fluoride being ‘good for dental health (www.naturalblaze.com).
At the 2007 WHO World Health Assembly, a resolution was passed that universal access to ﬂuoride for caries prevention was to be part of the basic right to human health. There are three basic ﬂuoride delivery methods for caries prevention; community based (ﬂuoridated water, salt and milk), professionally administered (ﬂuoride gels, varnishes) and selfadministered (toothpastes and mouth-rinses). It is important to note that combinations of different methods are in use in many communities throughout the world. For example, in the recent review of ﬂuoride use in twenty Asian countries the diversity of approach was evident.
The EAPD reaffirms its support for the use of community water fluoridation as a safe, effective, relevant and cost-saving public health measure for the prevention and control of dental caries. The Academy recognises that CWF alone is not a panacea but should be seen as an important element in a multi-faceted approach to caries prevention and control, which includes oral health promotion and access to affordable care.
Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral used in many dental products to strengthen tooth enamel and prevent cavities. It’s also added to the local water supplies in many cities throughout the world.
While the amount added to drinking water is considered to be relatively safe, exposure to high levels of fluoride may be linked to several health issues.
If you’re concerned about your fluoride intake, ask your local government about the fluoride in your city’s water. You can also opt for fluoride-free dental products, especially if you have young children.
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