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Fluoride Free Fairbanks Commentary

Fluoride Task Force needs to recognize the results of high-dose animal studies and human epidemiological studies, since:

1) The Public Health Service stated that these studies are needed to evaluate the risks posed to humans by fluoride,
2) The currently recommended concentration for community water fluoridation (0.7 to 1.2 ppm) is "justified" by human
epidemiological studies that address carries reduction,
3) H
igh-dose animal studies are a scientific standard for toxicology, and
4) The safety of water fluoridation is not based on scientific toxicology (see below), despite the status of fluoride as a bio-accumulating toxin.

If the Fluoride Task Force rejects the epidemiological studies cited on the Fluoride Free Fairbanks homepage, they're also rejecting the scientific basis for community water fluoridation.

Frequently cited sources for U.S. Public Health Service fluoridation policy

National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research: Historical account of water fluoridation science between 1901 and the late 1940's. The account notes that the basis for fluoride levels of up to 1.0 ppm in drinking water was based on epidemiological studies that concluded "fluoride levels of up to 1.0 ppm in drinking water did not cause enamel fluorosis in most people and only mild enamel fluorosis in a small percentage of people". Note the absence of scientific studies evaluating the safety of water fluoridation.

US fluoridation policy was initially based on epidemiological comparisons of four pairs of fluoridated/neighboring non-fluoridated cities: 1) Grand Rapids and Muskegon, Michigan; 2) Newburgh and Kingston, New York; 3) Evanston and Oak Park, Illinois; and 4) Brantford and Sarnia, Ontario, Canada.

1) Review the epidemiological character of the Grand Rapids and Muskegon, Michigan fluoridation study.

2) Review the first/last of the Newburgh-Kingston Caries Fluorine Studies, and which were followed-up by recent studies. Note the absence of long-term caries reduction, and the increase in dental fluorosis, due to fluoridation.

3) Review the epidemiological character of the Evanston and Oak Park, Illinois fluoridation study.

4) Review the epidemiological character of the Brantford and Sarnia, Ontario, Canada fluoridation study.

Public Health Service (Note: 2 MB file): Promotion and Application of Water Fluoridation, 1951: Minutes of a conference for public health officials who, among other things, discuss some of the earliest PHS recommendations for fluoride concentrations in public water supplies. At that time, PHS recommended a fluoride concentration of 1.2 ppm (see Pages 11 and 28), with a maximum concentration of 1.5 ppm (see Pages 28, 37, and 50). A fluoride concentration of 1.2 ppm was recommended because it caused only "mild" dental fluorosis, affecting 10 to 20 percent of the population (see Pages 11 and 29). This conference introduced a proposal to vary the "optimum" fluoride concentration by region based on climatic data, which in turn affects water consumption (see Pages 29-31, and 50).

Public Health Reports: Determining Optimum Fluoride Concentrations, 1957: The recommended fluoride concentration of 0.7-1.2 ppm is based on epidemiologic investigations which conclude "the optimum fluoride concentration for a given community is equal to a constant (the average amount of water containing 1 p.p.m. fluoride that affords optimum protection against dental caries) divided by the estimated water consumption of children in a given community." Warmer communities where children drink more should be fluoridated at the lower end of the "optimal" range, whereas cooler communities where children drink less water should be fluoridated at the upper end of the "optimal" range.

Public Health Service: Review of Fluoride: Risks and Benefits, 1991: Recommends continued water fluoridation at concentration of 0.7-1.2 ppm, but provides no sources for this recommendation. Recognizes that high-dose animal studies combined with human epidemiological studies are required to characterize the risks posed to humans from fluoride.

Centers for Disease Control: Achievements in Public Health, 1900-1999: States that the recommended fluoride concentration of 0.7-1.2 ppm is based on epidemiologic investigations from the 1962 PHS Publication # 956.

Centers for Disease Control: Recommendations for Using Fluoride to Prevent and Control Dental Caries in the United States, 2001: Reports the recommended fluoride concentration of 0.7-1.2 ppm is based on the 1991 Public Health Service "Review of Fluoride: Risks and Benefits"

Journal of Public Health Dentistry: An economic evaluation of community water fluoridation, 2001: See FFF's analysis of: a) the alleged "savings" of $19/person in a large community resulting from fluoridation, and b) the supposed "return on investment" of $38/person for every dollar spent on fluoridation.

York Review: A systematic review* frequently cited by fluoridation advocates. Its shortcomings and independent evaluations need to also be factored into public policy decisions

* Definition - Systematic Review: Systematic synthesis of results of multiple studies of a phenomenon using non-statistical techniques; an expert panel develops rigorous guidelines to delineate a focus, locate, appraise & synthesize evidence; purpose is to draw conclusions based on existing evidence.

Note: FFF is attempting to locate The concentration of fluorides in drinking water to give the point of minimum caries with maximum safety. Journal of the American Dental Association, 1950; 40: 436-9. If you have this report, please forward a copy to webmaster@fluoridefreefairbanks.org.