The Fluoride Debate

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

HISTORY/
ENVIRONMENT

CENSORSHIP

THE FLUORIDE
DEBATE

BENEFITS
Question 1
Question 2
Question 3
Question 4
Question 5
Question 6
Question 7
Question 8

ALTERNATIVES
Question 9
Question 10
Question 11
Question 12


SAFETY
Question 13
Question 14

OVERDOSE
Question 15
Question 16
Question 17

DISEASES
Question 18
Question 19
Question 20
Question 21
Question 22
Question 23
Question 24
Question 25
Question 26
Question 27
Question 28
Question 29
Question 30
Question 31
Question 32
Question 33

PUBLIC
POLICY

Question 34
Question 35
Question 36
Question 37
Question 38
Question 39
Question 40

COST
EFFECTIVENESS
Question 41
Question 42
Question 43

CONCLUSION

OVERDOSE

Question 17.
When fluoride is ingested, where does it go?

ADA's Fluoridation Facts Short Answer
Much is excreted; almost all of the fluoride retained in the body is found in calcified (hard) tissues, such as bones and teeth. Fluoride helps to prevent dental decay when incorporated into the teeth.

ADA's Fluoridation Facts Long Answer
After ingestion of fluoride, such as drinking a glass of optimally fluoridated water, the majority of the fluoride is absorbed from the stomach and small intestine into the blood stream.114 This causes a short term increase in the fluoride levels in the blood. The fluoride levels increase quickly and reach a peak concentration within 20-60 minutes.115 The concentration declines rapidly, usually within three to six hours following the peak levels, due to the uptake of fluoride by hard tissue and efficient removal of fluoride by the kidneys.104 Approximately 50% of the fluoride absorbed each day by young or middle-aged adults becomes associated with hard tissues within 24 hours while virtually all of the remainder is excreted in the urine. Approximately 99% of the fluoride present in the body is associated with hard tissues.114

Ingested or systemic fluoride becomes incorporated into forming tooth structures. Fluoride ingested regularly during the time when teeth are developing is deposited throughout the entire surface of the tooth and contributes to long lasting protection against dental decay.17

Additional discussion on this topic may be found in Question 1.

An individual's age and stage of skeletal development will affect the rate of fluoride retention. The amount of fluoride taken up by bone and retained in the body is inversely related to age. More fluoride is retained in young bones than in the bones of older adults.104, 114, 115

According to generally accepted scientific knowledge, the ingestion of optimally fluoridated water does not have an adverse effect on bone health.116-120 Evidence of advanced skeletal fluorosis, or crippling skeletal fluorosis, "was not seen in communities in the United States where water supplies contained up to 20 ppm (natural levels of fluoride)."74, 121 In these communities, daily fluoride intake of 20 mg/day would not be uncommon.74 Crippling skeletal fluorosis is extremely rare in the United States and is not associated with optimally fluoridated water; only 5 cases have been confirmed during the last 35 years.74

Additional discussion on this topic may be found in Question 18.

The kidneys play the major role in the removal of fluoride from the body. Normally kidneys are very efficient and excrete fluoride very rapidly. However, decreased fluoride removal may occur among persons with severely impaired kidney function who may not be on kidney dialysis.96 No cases of dental fluorosis or symptomatic skeletal fluorosis have been reported among persons with impaired kidney function; however, the overall health significance of reduced fluoride removal is uncertain and continued follow-up is recommended especially for children with impaired kidney function.54

Additional discussion on this topic may be found in Question 31.

Repeat of Question 17.
When fluoride is ingested, where does it go?

Opposition's Response

The ADA statement (above) says that because of the rapid removal of plasma fluoride by hard tissues and the kidneys, the plasma and soft tissue levels will return to pre-ingestion levels within three to six hours. That may be true if your kidneys are working properly; otherwise, fluoride is stored in soft tissues.

NOTE
Dr. John Yiamouyiannis says that if you drink lots of distilled water that "within 3 to 6 months, you will have your soft tissue fluoride levels down to normal and this is what really makes the difference. It's not so much the fluoride that's accumulated in your bones or your teeth, which is very hard to remove, but it's the fluoride that accumulates in the soft, active tissues." (See 17-1: "Fluoride: An Interview with Dr. John Yiamouyiannis," from Health Freedom News). Obviously, if a person is drinking fluoridated water on a daily basis, the fluoride will continue to accumulate in the tissue.

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First Edition
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