Stop Fluoridation!

RECEIVED Thu., Aug. 20, 2015

Dear Editor,
    Let’s leave municipal water fluoridation behind in the 1900s where it belongs. Fluoridation has been controversial in the past because advocates for it created despair, claiming “better than nothing” for dental enamel, but this is not true. Access to topical fluoride, via dental products and practices, is the effective way to strengthen tooth enamel, allowing dentists and patients to control fluoride dosage. With the Affordable Care Act (ACA), widespread childhood health and dental care is the wave of the future in cavity prevention. Municipal water fluoridation is the extinct dinosaur of the past century! Scientific studies have not established effectiveness, and most developed nations besides the U.S. do not use it. The City of Austin is wasting our tax money on an old idea when topical fluoride has won the day in efficacy. Access to dental care (for example, via ACA, Medicaid, CHIP, and charities) is far better targeted than municipal water fluoridation. This is where the city of Austin needs to put its focus. In Germany, Finland, and other developed countries, tooth decay rates remained stable or continued to decline after water fluoridation stopped. This has largely been attributed to widespread access to childhood dental care via their schools. Let’s use our private, city, state, and federal resources to increase access to dental care instead of ineffective manipulation of water fluoride.
Charlotte Jernigan
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