Toothpaste eaters the problem, not fluoridation

About the recent controversy concerning municipal water fluoridation, this Fort Smith Times Record editorial hits the nail on the head:

“In our neck of the woods, fluoride overdose is largely limited to children who eat large amounts of toothpaste.”

Fluoridation hasn’t failed us; parents have failed their children.

5 thoughts on “Toothpaste eaters the problem, not fluoridation”

  1. Health regulators are at fault for allowing toothpaste manufacturers to flavour fluoride toothpaste so children enjoy swallowing it. A friend told me how her adult children admitted to sneaking out of bed when they were young to eat fluoride toothpaste.

    But fluoridators must share blame for children getting too much toothpaste: it was known when artificial fluoridation began that the addition of fluoride to drinking water supplies at the rate of 1 part per million would cause about 10 per cent of children to develop dental fluorosis. This was supposed to be a fair trade-off for improved dental health.

    But dental fluorosis in American children is now 40.7% among those aged 12-15 years. And that’s after averaging the dental fluorosis in children this age from non-fluoridated and fluoridated areas. By combining then averaging the results from both areas, a skewed result is obtained – one that underestimates the damage to teeth from fluoridation and other sources of fluoride.

  2. I think you might be misunderstanding the term “dental fluorosis”.

    I can look at almost every child in my practice (about 50/50 fluoridated/non-fluoridated water) and see some sign of fluorosis. The initial stages (diffuse white spots) are the most common by far, followed by the more rare brown stains on only a couple of percent of the total.

    However, even the brown stains are only cosmetic in nature (and mild at that), it takes extremely high intake of fluoride to get to the point where teeth can actually be said to be “damaged”.

    I can honestly say I’ve never seen a child’s teeth “damaged” by fluorosis in 20 years of dentistry.

  3. We don’t need fluoride anyway. It is a halide and needs to be flushed from the body because it causes problems with the thyroid. Brush your teeth with something else for heaven’s sake.

  4. Halide?

    You mean like chloride? Are you saying we should remove table salt from our diet?

    Or how about iodine? It is a necessary element for our health.

  5. I cannot imagine eating toothpaste but as a parent I never left my children alone while they were learning to use it. Also we, as parents, made it very clear toothpaste could make them sick if they swallowed it and it was not a food. It is difficult to reason that toothpaste companies are responsible for children eating toothpaste by making it pleasant. I am sure rat killer tastes palatable but know not to eat it. Really.

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