Please fluoridate my children's water

Posted: Sunday, July 22, 2007

There is a significant error printed in the 2006 Drinking Water Quality Annual Report that was mailed out to city residents. The report falsely claims, "A CBJ task force recommended that artificial fluoridation cease." That task force was split evenly. Three sided with the American Dental Association, the American Cancer Society, the past five surgeon generals and a nearly unanimous majority of medical doctors and dentists. The other three sided with people who call themselves doctors, even though they are no more medical doctors than Dr. Laura is a psychiatrist.

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The question of whether to fluoridate Juneau's water as recommended by the Department of Health has brought forth much misleading information. One thing the report got right was that babies and otherwise immunocompromised individuals should not be drinking tap water, fluoride or not.

What the warning from the ADA, which David Ottoson refers to in his June 29 My Turn, actually says is that using fluoridated tap water as a primary water source may give babies more fluoride than they need, but that formulas with a lower amount of fluoride are beneficial. Yes, there is a recommended amount. Water with the recommended amount of fluoride for infants can be purchased at Juneau grocery stores.

On Nov. 20, 2006, Assembly member Sara Chambers stated "she was not a medical or dental expert, and would defer to that community for advice." Every representative of the medical and dental community who testified that day told her fluoridation is the long-proven, safe and effective solution to prevent tooth decay in Juneau's children.

Chambers and other Assembly members chose to ignore the advice of the medical and dental community in favor of misinformation from false authorities.

Your medical doctor and your dentist support fluoridation. Ask them! I see no harm in complementary therapies, but when their proponents try to subjugate science for baseless hysteria, they place our children at risk for real, serious health problems in the future.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recognizes fluoridation of public drinking water as "one of the top 10 public health advances of the 20th century." I want Juneau's children, including mine, to benefit from it.

Steve Reese

Registered nurse


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