Cavity rates declined when fluoridation stopped

January 24, 2001 -- /NYSCOF/

Cavity rates declined in several cities that stopped water fluoridation, new studies report, contradicting American Dental Association (ADA) predictions.

Fluoride added to over 62% of US water supplies is supposed to reduce tooth decay but these six studies from dental journals show it hasn’t and, in fact, may have increased the likelihood of rotten choppers.

"No increase in caries (cavities) was found in Kuopio (Finland) 3 years after the discontinuation of water fluoridation," according to Caries Research (1). In fact, when Kuopio was compared to a similar never-fluoridated Finnish town, cavity rates in both towns either remained the same or decreased six years after fluoridation was stopped in Kuopio.

Seven years after fluoridation ended in LaSalud, Cuba, cavities remained low in 6 to 9 year olds, decreased in 10 to 11 year-olds, significantly decreased in 12 to 13 year olds, while caries-free children increased dramatically, reports Caries Research (2).

East German scientists report, "following the cessation of water fluoridation in the cities Chemnitz (formerly Karl-Marx-Stadt) and Plauen, a significant fall in caries prevalence was observed," according to Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology (3). Additional surveys in the formerly-fluoridated towns of Spremberg and Zittau found. "Caries levels for the 12-year-olds of both towns significantly decreased... following the cessation of water fluoridation."

Not only did decay rates remain stable during an 11-month fluoridation break in Durham, NC, between September, 1990, and August, 1991 but dental fluorosis declined in children born during that period, according to the Journal of Dental Research (4)

In British Columbia, Canada, "the prevalence of caries decreased over time in the fluoridation-ended community while remaining unchanged in the fluoridated community," reported in Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology. (5)

In 1973, the Dutch town of Tiel stopped fluoridation. Researchers counted drilled, missing, and filled tooth surfaces (DMFS) of Tiel’s 15-year olds, then collected identical data from never-fluoridated Culemborg. DMFS initially increased in Tiel then dipped to 11% of baseline from 1968/69 to 1987/88 while never-fluoridated Culemborg’s 15-year-olds had 72% less cavities over the same period, reports Caries Research. (6)

A recently released government report out of Canada (7) shows similar negative results and offers a reason. Fluoridation was launched in the 1940’s when dentists believed fluoride’s beneficial effects were achieved internally, through the bloodstream then absorbed inside the teeth. The Canadians report that "this effect is likely to be minor... The evidence for a post-eruptive (topical) effect,... is much stronger."

Therefore, swallowing fluoride doesn’t reduce tooth decay but does cause dental fluorosis - white spotted, yellow or brown stained and sometimes pitted teeth.

According to the ADA’s website "Dental decay can be expected to increase if water fluoridation in a community is discontinued for one year or more, even if topical products such as fluoride toothpaste and fluoride rinses are widely used." See

"Well, science proves the ADA is wrong about the claimed benefits of water fluoridation and they are wrong about the safety of water fluoridation, too" says lawyer Paul Beeber, President, New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation. "Studies have linked fluoridation chemicals to increased blood lead levels, neurological defects, brittle bones, thyroid cancer and more," says Beeber. "It’s time for the media to challenge the science that supports water fluoridation and present the truth to the public. We’ve made it easy for the media to access the medline abstracts via the links below. No more excuses."

Other US government studies and statistics support the findings of these six studies and the Canadian government report. For example, children in fluoridated-since-1945 Newburgh, New York, have no less tooth decay but significantly more dental fluorosis than children from never-fluoridated Kingston, New York, according to Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology June 1999.

Hawaii and California, the least fluoridated US cities (13.0% and 15.7%, respectively) also produce residents least likely to be toothless, according to the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Yet Kentucky and West Virginia, 100% and 82.1% fluoridated, have the most toothless residents.

(1) "Caries trends 1992-1998 in two low-fluoride Finnish towns formerly with and without fluoridation," Caries Research, Nov-Dec 2000, Caries Research, Nov-Dec 2000.

(2) "Caries prevalence after cessation of water fluoridation in LaSalud, Cuba," Caries Research, Jan-Feb. 2000

(3) "Decline of caries prevalence after the cessation of water fluoridation in the former East Germany," Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, October 2000

(4) "The effects of a break in water fluoridation on the development of dental caries and fluorosis," Journal of Dental Research, Feb. 2000

(5) "Patterns of dental caries following the cessation of water fluoridation," Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, February 2001

(6) "Caries experience of 15-year-old children in The Netherlands after discontinuation of water fluoridation," Caries Research, 1993

(7) Benefits and Risks of Water Fluoridation.