Is Flouride In Your Toothpaste Good for You?

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Let’s take a moment and talk about fluoride. Living in the United States many of us are very familiar with it. It’s in our water and most of our dental hygiene products which makes it important to look at all aspects of it.

In the 1950s the US started to fluoridate it’s water resources in order to help decrease tooth carries (cavities). This was mostly based on an original study in Grand Rapids, MI that followed 30,000 children. They showed that fluoridation decreased carries by 60%. However, no looking back at this study we see a HUGE selection bias and drop out. In 2003 the World Oral Health Report showed that this figure is closer to 15% which still seems good. Well, let’s look what else fluoride is doing...
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Most of fluorides health benefits are based on two things a consumption of below 1ppm and dental health. However, there seems to be a lot more to this picture than these two.

First let’s look at the consumption. When fluoridation is added we rarely actually see safe levels of exposure. In fact, a study in Iowa showed 90% of 3 month olds had over the upper limit of fluoride exposure. Over exposure was also often seen in all other age populations as well. So, what does this mean?

The EPA stated that fluoridation has probable adverse effects including cognitive impairment, hypothyroidism, dental and skeletal fluorosis, enzyme and electrolyte derangement, and cancer. A China based study conducted by Harvard which concluded a 27 paper meta-analysis showed it also had decreased IQ and cognitive effects on children. Another study showed it inhibits over 22 important enzymes in the body including p450 a major detoxifying pathway enzyme.

So, in all we need to look at things as a whole. Yes, fluoridation may help decrease tooth carries however we must also be aware of what else and what all is truly happened when we mandate its use. So next time you go to drink some water or use toothpaste with maybe think twice about what it can do to your body.

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