After increased cases of dental fluorosis or spotting on the teeth in children, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is recommending a lowering of fluoride that is added to public drinking water.
Some public works have already started lowering its fluoride levels, writes northlandnewscenter.com.
“There were so many public fluoridated water supplies that were being used for making bottled beverages, sodas,” said Water Lab Chemist for Duluth Public Works, Loren Janson.
According to Phoenix station Fox10, too much fluoride has become a common cause of white splotches on teeth in children. One study found about 2 out of 5 adolescents had tooth streaking or spottiness.
Fluoride is a mineral in water and soil. About 70 years ago, scientists discovered that people whose drinking water naturally had more fluoride also had fewer cavities.
Since 1962, the government has been advising water systems to add fluoride to a level of 0.7 parts per million for warmer climates, writes Fox10, where people drink more water, to 1.2 parts per million in cooler areas.
The new standard is 0.7 everywhere.
Grand Rapids, Michigan, became the world’s first city to add fluoride to its drinking water in 1945.
Six years later, a study found a dramatic decline in tooth decay among children there, and the U.S. surgeon general at that time endorsed water fluoridation, writes local news site marinij.com.
Today, about 75 percent of Americans get fluoridated water.