Fluoride Linked To Gum Disease
22 May 2007
Scientists report a link between dental fluorosis and periodontal disease in the June 2007 Indian Journal of Dental Research.
Dental fluorosis - white spotted, yellow, brown stained and/or pitted teeth - is a visual manifestation of fluoride overdose during childhood. Dental fluorosis afflicts from 1/3 to 1/2 of U.S. schoolchildren, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
Inhabitants of the Davangere district of India were studied where natural water fluoride levels ranged from 1.5 to 3.0 parts-per-million (ppm) which is similar to fluoride levels allowed in U.S. water supplies (up to 4 ppm). The sample consisted of 1,029 subjects between 15- and 74-years-old.
As the degree of dental fluorosis increased, periodontitis (advanced gum infection) increased. "The results suggest that there is a strong association of occurrence of periodontal disease in high-fluoride areas," write Vandana and Reddy.
"Surprisingly, studies have not paid attention to the periodontal status in high-fluoride areas from a research perspective," the authors write.
"In addition to inflammatory process, which remains common to high- and low-fluoride areas, the fluorosis induced changes in hard and soft tissues of periodontium requires … attention to suspect fluoride as an etiological (environmental) agent for periodontal disease," the authors conclude.
Two thirds of U.S. public water suppliers purposely add fluoride chemicals (silicofluorides) in an attempt to reduce tooth decay in tap water drinkers. Some U.S. communities have natural fluoride levels up to 4 ppm..
"How much longer do the American people have to be the guinea pigs in the U.S.'s fluoridation experiment," asks lawyer Paul Beeber, President, New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation.
The National Research Council advises more studies are required on fluoride's effects on reasoning ability, endocrine functions, the immune deficient, fertility, gastric response, bladder cancer, kidney and liver enzyme functions and more.
Studies already link fluoride to cancer, genetic defects, IQ deficits, thyroid dysfunction, kidney, tooth and bone damage. But government officials want even more studies before they condemn fluoridation.
"Who will decide when fluoride's mounting risks outweigh its questionable benefits. The individual or the government?" asks Beeber. "Fluoridation leaves it in the hands of the government."
"Fluoridation chemicals are in short supply these days," says Beeber, "This would be a good time to gracefully bow out of water fluoridation."
New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, Inc