Study finds water fluoride chemicals may cause cavities

Nov. 11, 2002
Chemicals commonly used to fluoridate drinking water may increase rather than decrease tooth decay, according to a study recently published.

NEW YORK, Nov. 11, 2002 -- Chemicals commonly used to fluoridate drinking water may increase rather than decrease tooth decay, according to a study published in a U.S. government journal, "Environmental Health Perspectives," reports the New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation (NYSCOF).

Children studied in fluoridated Boston/Cambridge, Massachusetts, have significantly more tooth decay than children living in non-fluoridated Farmington, Maine, report researchers Gemmel et al., contrary to American Dental Association assertions that fluoridation reduces decay from 40-59%.

Ironically, the intended decay-preventative fluoride chemicals, silicofluorides, added to Boston/Cambridge water supply are linked to higher blood lead levels. And lead is linked to cavities in Gemmel's study and several others.

"... blood lead level was positively associated with number of caries (cavities) among urban (fluoridated) children, even with adjustment for demographic and maternal factors and child dental practices," write Gemmel and colleagues.

Over 91% of U.S. fluoridating communities use silicofluorides. Yet, silicofluorides have never been tested for safety or efficacy.

"The recently reported association between use of silicofluorides as water fluoridants and the prevalence of elevated blood lead levels (Masters and Coplan 2000) might explain, in part, the stronger association between blood lead levels and caries...because the water supplies of Boston and Cambridge are treated with fluorosilicic acid (a silicofluoride)," write the researchers. Farmington water suppliers do not add any fluoride chemicals.

"It appears that silicofluorides facilitate the transport of lead from the gut into the bloodstream whatever the source of lead may be -- dust from indoor paint, lead oxide in the soil left from leaded gasoline exhaust, etc.," says Chemical Engineer, Myron Coplan, Senior Corporate Scientist, and co-author of "Association of silicofluoride treated water with elevated blood lead."

"Our data did not correlate high water lead with high prevalence of elevated blood lead when sodium fluoride or no fluoride was in the water," says Coplan.

Gemmel and colleagues theorize the "lead in saliva is sorbed onto the surface of a tooth and incorporated into the hydroxyapatite (tooth mineral), perhaps replacing calcium." Calcium loss creates cavities.
"This may explain why American children display over-fluoridated teeth (dental fluorosis), along with rampant tooth decay in fluoridated cities," says lawyer Paul Beeber, President, NYSCOF.

References on their website:

Source: NYS Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation

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