Michael Czajka. Impacts of Fluoridation in Context. RMIT University, Box 2476
GPO, Melbourne, Victoria, 3001, Tel: 613-9925-2122, Fax: 613-9925-3747, Email: MC1@pobox.com
Abstract: This review article is written from a food chemistry perspective. It focuses on the systemic effects of fluoride (rather than the effects of fluoride on the teeth) since fluoride research concentrates largely on the teeth to the virtual exclusion of systemic effects. This is surprising given that fluoride is a known systemic toxin. About 400 million people (~6% of the world’s population) drink fluoridated water. The effect of fluoride on the teeth is topical (directly on the teeth) and not systemic, so drinking fluoridated water has no benefit. Fluoride is a lipid soluble neurotoxin and enzyme poison. Fluoride accumulates in the pineal gland (average 9000 ppm in calcium hydroxy apatite crystals) and bone. Dental fluorosis is a marker for skeletal fluorosis. At 1 ppm 32 % of US children have dental fluorosis. At 1 ppm some sections of the population (e.g. infants) will ingest too much fluoride. Unfluoridated and fluoridated countries have similar rates of tooth decay. Given that fluoridation of water supplies is not necessary to maintain a reduction in tooth decay and that the side effects of ingestion are undesirable, the practice is likely to come under increasing scrutiny. More studies on the systemic effects of fluoride are urgently required.
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