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Adding Fluoride to Drinking Water

Fluoride Action Network
August 23,2005

 Don't play taps for tap water as we know it

Adding fluoride to drinking water
Our opinion: Investigate whether there's a bone cancer link, but in the meantime keep fluoridating drinking water to promote good dental health

This story ran on nwitimes.com on Tuesday, August 23, 2005 12:12 AM CDT

Health concerns expressed on behalf of about 7,000 U.S. Environmental Protection Agency workers cannot be taken lightly.

Eleven unions representing those workers are calling for an investigation into whether a study done four years ago on the effects of fluoridation of drinking water was suppressed.

The study done four years ago at the Harvard University School of Dentistry found bone cancer cases among young boys have risen sevenfold, with fluoride in the drinking water possibly linked to the increase.

Health officials say the study hasn't gone through the proper review, and even the person who did the study has questioned the results.

Perhaps you will recall that Valparaiso dealt with this issue two years ago.

Filmmaker Gary Foreman of Native Sun Productions, a Valparaiso company that specializes in historical documentaries, urged the Valparaiso water department to stop fluoridating the water.

The city adds about 0.6 pounds of fluoride per million pounds of water. Some occurs naturally.

Foreman's research ended with a conclusion that fluoride in water is harmful and has no benefits.

It is an issue that affects almost everyone. Every water utility in Indiana except one fluoridates the water, although Indiana does not require it.

The letter from those EPA workers' union added new life to the perennial debate over the efficacy of fluoridating water.

The unions want the National Academy of Sciences' National Research Council to issue a public warning on fluoridation, pending the release of the results of the review of that Harvard study.

They are wrong.

Fluoridation has been a great boon to dental health. Cavities are fewer, and teeth are stronger, as a result of this improved drinking water.

The review is necessary, and if the results are inconclusive, another review or another study should be done.

In the meantime, however, the tremendous public health benefits brought by fluoridating the water should not be swept aside because of unsubstantiated fears.

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The Canary Club is an educational advisory group with a team of medical advisors headed by Richard Shames, M.D.