Diane Ernst, RPh released an article in MPR on April 27, 2015 titled FDA, HHS: This Is How Much Fluoride Should Be in Water. Both the FDA and HHS have recommended the maximum level of fluoride for those bottling water or for municipal drinking water supplies to be 0.7 mg/L. A panel of scientists made these recommendations based upon the presence of fluoride in mouthwash and toothpaste.
This new level of 0.7 mg/L will not satisfy many people that believe that there should be no fluoride in water, mouthwash or toothpaste. Fluoride is poisonous and highly corrosive. It is used primarily in the US to prevent cavities. As noted in Ernst’s article, 75% of municipal water supplies in the US are fluoridated.
A British study concluded that 0.3 mg/L of fluoride increased the risk of hypothyroidism by 30%. This study was led by Steven Peckham of the University of Kent (UK). The main conclusion of the British study indicated that critics of fluoridation have at least this study to justify their position against fluoridation. The article was published February 24, 2015 in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health. The new US standard is more than double the level established in the UK study showing that fluoride reduced thyroid functions substantially. Water Fluoridation Linked to Hypothyroidism in Britain is the name of the article published in HealthDay News.
The researchers found that in locales where tap water fluoride levels exceeded 0.3mg/L, the risk for having an underactive thyroid rose by 30%. Peckhams’s team also found that hypothyroidism rates were nearly double in urbanized regions that had fluoridated tap water, compared with regions that did not.
Edmond Hewlett, DDS, ADA spokesman and a professor at the UCLA School of Dentistry, told HealthDay. “Currently, the best available scientific evidence indicates that optimally fluoridated water does not have an adverse effect on the thyroid gland or its function.”
The reduction in fluoride will not increase tooth decay in the US, and it will reduce discoloration of children’s teeth that have been treated with fluoride. As is often the case, the experts disagree on the relative benefits of fluoridation of water versus health risks from fluoride on organs in the body. John Dieke of EcoWatch released an article on Feb. 20, 2014 titled Harvard Professor: Fluoride Toxic to Children, Linked to Autism. This study may be a factor in the revision of the maximum fluoride levels now permitted in drinking water.
The authors, Dr. Philippe Grandjean of the Harvard School of Public Health and Dr. Philip Landrigan of the Icahn School of Medicine write, “A meta-analysis of 27 cross-sectional studies of children exposed to fluoride in drinking water, mainly from China, suggests an average IQ decrement of about seven points in children exposed to raised fluoride concentrations.”
The majority of these 27 studies had water fluoride levels of less than four milligrams per liter, which falls under the allowable level set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
Developmental neurotoxins, which are capable of causing widespread brain disorders such as autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and learning disabilities, often cause untreatable and permanent damage.
Just as lead and mercury have been linked to severe impairment of mental functions, fluoride is coming under increasing scrutiny for its impact on childhood development. Mercury has been removed from all childhood vaccines, and most adult vaccines. It is time to consider a similar ban on water fluoridation.