- Editor's Note: The Yorktown Town Board will hold an informational hearing on Jan. 22 at Town Hall to consider whether the town of Yorktown’s practice of adding fluoride to the drinking water supply should be discontinued.
- Carol S. Kopf has submitted to Patch the following guest commentary.
In a Guest Commentary: 'Yorktown Should Continue Fluoridating Its Water Supply' Dentist Carl H. Tegtmeier’s claims that fluoridation is safe. He wrote that fluoridation has faced “rigorous scientific studies” and was “peer reviewed by experts in the fields of oral health, medicine, biophysics, chemistry, toxicological pathology, and epidemiology.”
But he fails to give us any references to any of that safety research because they don’t exist. Although I’m sure Dr. Tegtmeier thinks they do. Dr. Tegtmeier can prove me wrong by producing studies showing fluoridation is safe for all.
In 1990, the New York State Department of Health reported that "The available data suggest that some individuals may experience hypersensitivity to fluoride-containing agents" and " …individuals with renal insufficiency who consume large quantities of fluoridated water are at an increased risk of developing skeletal fluorosis."
(1) After 3 years of scrutinizing hundreds of studies, the National Research Council revealed in 2006 that fluoride can subtly alter endocrine function, especially in the thyroid -- the gland that produces hormones regulating growth and metabolism among other adverse health effects, even at levels added to Yorktown’s water supplies.
(2) In 2008, Scientific American reported that "Some recent studies suggest that over-consumption of fluoride can raise the risks of disorders affecting teeth, bones, the brain and the thyroid gland.”
(3) The CDC reports that fluoride hardens outer tooth enamel by topical means. Swallowing fluoride can lead to adverse effects. Studies have shown that dentists are uneducated about this new science. For example, Yoder reported “The majority of dental professionals surveyed were unaware of the current understanding of fluoride's predominant posteruptive mode of action.” in the Journal of Public Health Dentistry.
Tegtmeier also claims fluoride will make stronger bones. There is no dispute that too much fluoride damages teeth and bones. The CDC reports that up to 60% of 12-15 year-olds are affected with fluoride overdose symptoms which show up as dental fluorosis (white spotted, yellow, brown and/or pitted teeth); but they failed to examine what, if any, adverse effects fluoride has done to those children’s bones or those of any other Americans. There have been studies which show that fluoride makes bones more dense but then they are more brittle and easily fracture. If Dr. Tegtmeier has studies to prove fluoride makes bones stronger, we’d like to see that, too.
Carol S. Kopf
P.S. I spearheaded the reversal of 29 years of water fluoridation in Levittown, NY in 1983. I now volunteer for both the New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation, Inc. and the Fluoride Action Network
1) Critical Reviews in Oral Biology & Medicine, "Fluoride: Benefits And Risks of Exposure," by Kaminsky et. al
2) Fluoride in Drinking Water,A Scientific Review of EPA's Standards
National Research Council http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=115713) Scientific American, “Second Thoughts on Fluoride,” by Dan Faginhttp://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=second-thoughts-on-fluoride