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A Leading Medical Journal Encourages Fluoride In Britain's Water

What's the best way to prevent childhood tooth decay? Leading medical journal The Lancet says it's adding fluoride to water. The publication also says there's a problem with political will. According to the Lancet, water fluoridation is the most "cost effective" and best "evidence based" method of cavity and gum disease prevention. However, implementing fluoridation will sometimes require politicians to overcome unwarranted opposition.

Dentists believe that adding fluoride to water could significantly reduce tooth decay, especially among children and in deprived areas. The Lancet warns that a child's development can be negatively affected by tooth decay, affecting the child's eating, sleeping and concentration in school. In countries like Britain, according to the journal, tooth pain is a very common reason given for children mission school.

"Political will and community acceptance" are what's needed to achieve water supply fluoridation according to The Lancet, which concluded that "professionally, health workers, including physicians, nurses, paediatricians and pharmacists can all deliver prevention messages about the use of fluoride and the risk factors for oral disease. Politically, commitment is needed to integrate oral disease prevention into ... public-health systems. Good oral health should be everybody's business."

England's chief dental officer, Barry Cockcroft has commented that fluoridation of nearly half of Britain's water supply would result in great improvement in dental health throughout deprived areas of the nation. He told Dental Tribune magazine that 40 per cent of the country's water should be fluoridated. A department of health spokesman said "Dental decay is far worse in poorer communities than affluent ones. Fluoridation reduces these inequalities. Academic studies continue to show that fluoridation is safe and cost effective. Over 200 million people drink fluoridated water in America, some now for over 60 years, with no ill effects on their health."

“The fact is that I started out as somewhat skeptical and cautious about fluoridation. But then I became a firm believer as proof was assembled by scientists that fluoridation of a water supply will reduce the production of tooth cavities (our most prevalent disease) by 60%, and, just as important, that no disease or defect is caused by this procedure. What particularly allayed my early doubts about adding a chemical to public water supplies was learning that fluoride has always occurred naturally in water supplies.” Dr. Benjamin Spock
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