Fluoride in Drinking Water – Is it Dangerous?

Fluoride in Drinking Water – Is it Dangerous?
Fluoride in Drinking Water – Is it Dangerous?

Many cities add fluoride to drinking water. Fluoride is added to municipal water to prevent tooth decay, primarily in young adults. The practice is quite controversial with dentists suggesting it’s a great idea while others want it out.

You can remove fluoride from water using either a kitchen or whole house water purification system by https://cleanairpurewater.com/whole_house_water_filter.html.

As you may be aware, most cities add fluoride to drinking water. It is usually added in the range of .7 – 1.2 parts per million (ppm). USEPA allows a maximum of up to 4 ppm, but that is far too high. Recent investigations have resulted in cities reducing the amount of fluoride they add.

It’s hard for me to know or understand how this trend got started. Some say that fluoride is a byproduct of the aluminum industry and it was a convenient way for them to dispose of this waste product. That’s a pretty dismal perspective. Others suggest that it began with dentists promoting fluoride as a tooth decay measure. We know that fluoride was added to toothpaste for the same reason.

Regardless the trend took off and now nearly every city in the country adds fluoride to our drinking water. The exception generally are very small rural water systems or cities where citizens have voted it out.

This is one of those situations where the intended good has unintended consequences. A study done in 2019 found a link between pregnant women who drink fluoridated water and the IQ of their sons at 3 – 4 years of age. The boys whose moms drank fluoridated water had a lower IQ. Girls were not affected. This occurred at the levels present in city water. It appears to be conclusive that fluoride affects male children in this way. Of course lower IQ is a life-long affliction, so this is not to be taken lightly.

Since fluoride was added to water dentists have noticed an increase in fluorosis, or mottling of the teeth. It turns out that kids were getting too much fluoride in their water. Fluorosis cannot be gotten from fluoride in toothpaste unless the toothpaste is swallowed. Government studies suggested the mottling was simply cosmetic, but the point of adding fluoride to water was to help, not hurt people. As a result of this situation government agencies lowered their recommended levels of fluoride in drinking water.

Some 27 million Americans suffer from some form of thyroid dysfunction. The thyroid produces hormones. When it is not functioning properly hormonal balance is thrown out of whack. The thyroid uses iodine to produce hormones. It turns out that fluoride interferes with the ability of the thyroid to interact with iodine. Thus it has been determined that fluoride in water can interfere in hormone production.

What started out as a well-intentioned idea, at least according to dentists, has caused a number of serious problems. Dentists continue to support the addition of fluoride to water saying that in particular it benefits less privileged children. This assertion seems ridiculous. A benefit should accrue to the entire population rather than hurting some while mildly helping others. If fluoride is of value, as dentists assert, then you may obtain it in your tooth paste. In fact, some studies suggest that fluoride is only useful when applied directly to the teeth, not swallowed in water.

Fluoride can also cause bone loss. It can also occur naturally in city or well water. I have heard of situations in southwestern Colorado where fluoride levels were so high in well water (5 – 7 ppm) that people discovered it when their horses broke their legs in the normal course of running. The same effect can take place in older people. Bone loss that is.

All in all it appears that the addition of fluoride to water is a mixed blessing, or curse as the case may be. If you’re someone who would like to remove fluoride from your water there are several ways to go about it. First, I will caution you to be very leery of any claims made by water treatment providers.

Fluoride is difficult to remove from water. If you want to be absolutely certain you are removing it from drinking water then a drinking water reverse osmosis system is the way to accomplish that. Most kitchen filters do not remove fluoride. Carbon filters do not. If for some reason you wish to avoid using reverse osmosis then look for a home water filtration systems that uses both carbon and activated alumina. The latter will reduce or remove the fluoride.

A 2008 New Hampshire study suggests that fluoride is absorbed through the skin in the shower or bath. You can reduce or eliminate fluoride from your entire home by using a home water filtration systems. Beware of false claims! Fluoride removal relies heavily on flow rate, meaning that the slower the water is flowing through the filter the more fluoride will be removed. At high flow rates these filters won’t remove any fluoride at all. There are numerous manufacturers of fluoride filters who will state simply that their filter removes fluoride, but that doesn’t mean it will remove all of it. Do your research!

You want to buy the size home water filtration systems that fits your intended water usage. What’s important in this case is your simultaneous use of water. In other words if you intend to use only one shower at a time you can buy a smaller system than if you want to remove fluoride from two showers at a time. Buy the size system that meets your family’s typical water habits.

Another factor affecting fluoride removal is water chemistry. High bicarbonates, or alkalinity, in water will interfere with removal. In this situation you can buy a home water filtration systems but it won’t do anything. To learn what’s in your water find your local water quality report. Your local water provider is required by federal law to provide this to you annually. You can generally find it by searching online. This report lists your water source as well as the regulated contaminants in your water. It should also tell you how much fluoride you have. Be sure to look for alkalinity. If it’s not listed you can call them to inquire.

Staying healthy has become increasingly challenging as more of our food and water sources become contaminated. But you can take effective action to protect yourself by following the steps outlined herein.

Live long and stay healthy!

 

 

 

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Fluoride in Drinking Water – Is it Dangerous?

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