Last Updated: 9/29/2020
Adding fluoride to municipal drinking water supplies has been a hot-button issue for years. Some cities and residents support the potential health benefits of widespread fluoridation. Others are opposed to what they consider forced medication by the government, and doubt the health benefits of fluoride in water altogether.
Luckily, the Quench Water Experts are here to help. We breakdown the benefits and drawbacks of adding fluoride to public drinking water sources below. We also offer tips for those wondering how to remove fluoride from water. Lastly, for those who are curious about their individual community’s water supply, we tell you where to go to find fluoride levels in water by city at the end of this article. Read on to discover more.
Pros of Fluoride in Water
According to Discovery Fit and Health, the measure of adding fluoride to water was first endorsed by the American Dental Association in 1953. It was thought that fluoride, which is an active ingredient in most toothpaste brands, could provide the same health benefits as brushing one’s teeth. These included strengthening the enamel of teeth while preventing decay, cavities, and tooth loss. The idea behind the fluoridation of public drinking water supplies was that people who didn’t regularly brush their teeth would gain access to the same health benefits. This was especially important for children.
Community water fluoridation is believed to have been so effective at preventing tooth decay that the CDC named it one of 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century. Fluoride in water is attributed to the prevention of at least 25 percent of tooth decay in children and adults. That decrease in tooth decay can even be spotted today – in an age when many people in the United States have access to fluoride toothpaste. Beyond the documented health benefits, fluoridating drinking water is proven to be safe, it saves communities money they would otherwise be spending on dental care, and it is a natural ingredient found in groundwater and the oceans.
Cons of Fluoride in Water
Despite the noted health benefits of fluoride, there have been questions and doubts raised as to its efficacy when put in drinking water. Some experts have even claimed that excessive fluoride can result in a host of negative outcomes, including fluorosis, which results in a staining of the teeth. Although fluorosis is a cosmetic condition and does not cause any serious physical problems, the National Institutes of Mental Health has suggested that fluoride-damaged teeth can lead to psychological and behavioral problems. Additionally, while some dentists and experts expound the benefits of fluoride in water, they have stressed that it must be applied topically to be effective.
“[Fluoridation] does not work ingested,” Dr. Robert C. Dickson, a family physician in Calgary, told CBC News. “It’s like trying to ingest your sunscreen. Fluoride works topically. So, let’s put it on our teeth. Let’s put it on with brushing. Let’s put it on at the dentist if you choose. Let’s not put it inside our bodies where it doesn’t work.”
The widespread medication of whole population segments through drinking water supplies is off-putting to some residents as well. Currently, there exists no medication or supplement that is physically tolerated universally by populations, and fluoride is no different. Medical News Today reports low thyroid functions, fatigue, weight gain, and irregular bowel function, could be exacerbated by consuming too much fluoride.
How to Remove Fluoride from Water
Residents on both sides of the debate stand to benefit from using filtered water dispensers from Quench. Consumers who believe in the health benefits of fluoride in water will be happy to hear that the standard carbon filtration in Quench water coolers remove impurities, yet leaves the fluoride behind. Meanwhile, opponents to fluoridation who want to know how to remove fluoride from water can opt for a filtered water dispenser with a reverse osmosis filter system. A reverse osmosis filter system like the one in Quench’s Q5 and Q7 series effectively removes fluoride, as well as a variety of other contaminants.
The Quench Solution
The ingredients found in municipally treated tap water vary from zip code to zip code. Those interested in a breakdown of fluoride levels in water by city can visit our Local Water Experts page. Quench has a national team of account managers and service technicians standing behind every filtered water dispenser and reverse osmosis filter system. Our in-depth knowledge of water conditions from coast-to-coast, including fluoride levels in water by city, allow us to recommend the best water filtration solution for your business. So, the choice is yours!