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Why do we need fluoride?

The history of using fluoride as a supplement to control tooth decay dates back to the 1930s. In 1945, the U.S. National Institutes of Health began a controlled experiment with Grand Rapids, Michigan, being the first city to have fluoridated water. After seeing positive results with the prevention of tooth decay, fluoridation became an official policy of the U.S. Public Health Service in 1951 and by 1960 fluoride was in wide use.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate water fluoridation to be one of the ten great public health achievements of the 20th century. Opponents to fluoridation, while relatively few, are organized and present a disproportionate objection and misleading view of water fluoridation.

With all the controversy, I want you to know I consider fluoride to be safe and essential to healthy teeth formation and maintenance when used with professional guidance. My friends and family use fluoride to good advantage. For the Foothills, water fluoridation would not appear feasible with our several water sources.

To calculate the fluoride dose needed, a current fluoride analysis for your water source needs to be available. For families without fluoridated water, your dentist may want you to have fluoride treatments which come in several forms – gels, foams, mouthwashes, or varnishes.

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