How Does Fluoride in Tap Water Affect Our Health?

April 9, 2018

Water fluoridation – the process of adding fluoride to public water supplies – has been taking place for decades in the United States. This process began as a result of studies that showed adding fluoride to water could reduce the prevalence of tooth decay.

Since tooth decay is a common health issue, especially in children, the intent behind water fluoridation was to offer a simple way to help improve the dental health of the population, leading to savings on dental care costs for individuals and families.

However, there are increasing concerns about the potential negative health effects of intentionally adding fluoride to tap water.

Health Concerns About Fluoride

A 2006 scientific review of the EPA’s standards suggested that tap water treated with fluoride was associated with increased rates of bone fractures and dental problems. A few specific health issues that have been associated with excessive exposure to fluoride include:

  • Dental Fluorosis – Tiny white streaks or specks in a tooth’s enamel can occur after exposure to high concentrations of fluoride during childhood. While this doesn’t affect the health of the teeth, the discoloration may be noticeable.
  • Skeletal Fluorosis – A bone disease that can result in pain and damage to bones and joints.
  • Thyroid Problems – In certain cases, damage to the parathyroid gland (which can result in hyperparathyroidism) can occur.
  • Neurological Problems – In 2014, fluoride (in addition to 10 other industrial chemicals) was documented as a neurotoxin that could be hazardous to child development. Further, a 2017 report suggested that exposure to fluoride before birth could lead to poorer cognitive outcomes.

Reasons Not to Drink Fluoridated Water

The International Academy of Oral Medicine & Toxicology (IAOMT) lists the top 10 reasons to oppose fluoridation. Below are a few of those reasons.

  • As stated above, fluoride has been classified as a neurotoxin and can be harmful in high doses.
  • Excessive exposure can lead to tooth discoloration, bone problems and possibly other health issues.
  • People have the right to choose if they want to drink water that has had fluoride added to it.
  • Current levels of fluoride in the water supply may not be safe.
  • It may be harmful to both pets and wild animals.

Choose Better Water

As more research is being done and there is an increasing number of cases against excessive exposure to fluoride, it can’t hurt to be proactive about the water you and your family drink.

When you drink purified water, like Primo Water, you can drink the amount of water you need to each day to stay healthy and hydrated, while being confident that you won’t be exposed to harmful amounts of contaminants.