Home Dentistry Articles Water Fluoridation
Water fluoridation is the act of adding fluoride
ions to water in order to reduce tooth decay in the general
population. Many North American municipalities fluoridate their
water supplies, citing effectiveness in reducing tooth decay,
safety of fluoridation, and the low cost to do so.
The American Dental Association (ADA), World
Health Organization (WHO), and some other health organizations
recommend fluoridation of municipal water supplies to a level
between 0.7 and 1.2 ppm. On the other hand, governments in some
parts of the world have banned fluoridation, and a controversy
exists over its benefits and dangers.
Where used in very low concentrations (on the
order of parts per million), fluorides are used in human health
applications; specifically, fluorides such as sodium fluoride
(NaF), sodium fluorophosphate (SMFP), tin(II) fluoride (SnF2),
and amine fluoride are common ingredients in toothpaste. Many
dentists also give their patients semiannual fluoride treatments
if they do not have a fluoridated water supply.