Apply fluoride to teeth, not the the water

Posted: Friday, September 28, 2007

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We don't need to fluoridate Juneau's city water to protect and strengthen our children's teeth. We don't need to drink fluoride, because it only helps teeth when it contacts tooth surfaces. Brushing with fluoride toothpaste does that, simply and safely, every day. Some kids don't brush? In many cities, school nurses or dental technicians quickly paint an invisible fluoride coating on the child's teeth, twice a year. Simple. That's all the fluoride our kids need. A tiny amount, twice a year. Adding a little more from tooth brushing is OK. That coating program would cost about the same as we'd pay to fluoridate all our city water, only a very small fraction of which will slosh briefly on our teeth to strengthen them.

Half of our high school grads have zero cavities or fillings. Most parents are already doing a great job with their kids. Keep it up, reduce sugary foods and drinks between meals, and keep them brushing with fluoride toothpaste.

And, let's add an in-school, twice-yearly, tooth-coating program, to be sure we reach every child. Then we don't have to swallow all that sodium fluoride chemical, every person, every glass of water, which does none of us any good, and can harm us in several ways.

It's simple. Vote no on 2. I'll join you.

Bill Leighty


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