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[personal profile] c9
"Every $1 invested in fluoridation saves approximately $38 in dental treatment costs, according to the C.D.C. The cost of a single filling averages $140, and that’s only the beginning. Through the years, a filled tooth is likely to require further repairs and maybe even extraction and replacement with a bridge or implant costing thousands of dollars.

None of this, however, has quelled the controversy over the safety of fluoridation, which dates back to the first studies in the 1940s. In addition to being labeled a Communist plot and an unconstitutional form of mass medication, fluoridation has been accused of causing a host of medical horrors: heart disease, cancer, Down syndrome, AIDS, allergies, Alzheimer’s disease, mental retardation, osteoporosis and fractures, among others.

None of these supposed risks has ever been established in scientifically valid studies. The only proven risk, a condition called fluorosis, which results in white and sometimes brownish markings on the teeth from too much fluoride, rarely results from a normal intake of fluoridated water."


Read the full article here: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/23/dental-exam-went-well-thank-fluoride/

(and city Councillors in Toronto and Calgary and elsewhere who like to cut costs by scaremongering about fluoride? I'd like you to shut it, please.)

Update: Learn more about fluoride history and controversy here: http://www.anzhealthpolicy.com/content/4/1/25 

Date: 2012-01-25 02:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] richie73.livejournal.com
In Germany, the country I grew up in, water isn't fluoridated, and in the western part, it never was. The same is true for other european countries. Don't you think if water fluoridation was as effective as you believe it is, the difference in observed tooth decay rates between countries that use/don't use fluoridation would be so obvious, so readily apparent, that opposition to fluoridation would have long crumbled?

Here's an interesting little fact.

In the German east, fluoridation was discontinued after reunification and rather than the expected increase in caries, a decrease was observed!

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11014515

"In contrast to the anticipated increase in dental caries following the cessation of water fluoridation in the cities Chemnitz (formerly Karl-Marx-Stadt) and Plauen, a significant fall in caries prevalence was observed. "

The pro-fluoridation authors of this study try to explain the decline away as a combination of some kind of long-lasting after-effect of fluoridation plus increased oral health awareness and use of fluoridated dental products, but in the end, they have to admit that "there is still no definitive explanation for the current pattern."

------------------------------------------------------

In any event, you are missing the point. If you believe fluoride is good for you then you are free to use fluoridated toothpaste and other products. However, those of us who see a very different set of facts, and see fluoridation as useless at best, object rightfully to this forced and involuntary medication of putting a drug into the water supply.

Date: 2012-01-25 02:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] c9.livejournal.com
Interesting study, thanks for the link. Can you clarify why you say the authors are pro-fluoridation? Is that covered in the study write up, or is that a subjective judgement? The abstract certainly doesn't support that description so I'm curious if you have other resources on this topic.

Date: 2012-01-25 03:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] richie73.livejournal.com
I call them pro-fluoridation because they call caries reduction brought about by the fluoridation of drinking water an "established fact" in their abstract. When your working hypothesis has just suffered a major predictive defeat and you still call it an established fact, that's some pretty heavy bias.

Date: 2012-01-25 03:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] c9.livejournal.com
OK thanks! Just wanted to clarify if that was the only source. I would have thought established and fairly evidence-supported hypotheses would carry some weight when describing results of a single study in case it's an outlier but I'm not certain of the rules that journals have.

Date: 2012-01-25 04:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] c9.livejournal.com
It's fascinating to look at this from the 10,000-foot level for me. North America tends toward less "nanny-state" activities in some things when compared to many parts of Europe, and completely overdoes it in others. Things I thought of that are unbalanced between the continents: (*not meant in any way judgementally, I really am just finding this line of thought interesting!*)

- fluoride
- smoking
- helmet laws
- climate legislation
- camera surveillance
- free speech legislation

Just like with English spellings in UK, US, and Canada, I see similar half-measures in Canada on each of these items as well. Curiouser and curiouser, Alice said.

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