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Study Advises Lethal Levels of
Fluoride in Toothpaste For Children

Researchers from the Cochrane Oral Health Group are recommending that parent use toothpastes with lethal levels of fluoride for their children.

The report suggests parents should use toothpastes that contain fluoride with a minimum concentration of 1,000 parts per million, a dosage which is 250 times higher than what the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states is the upper limit for humans. Even more concerning is the author's claims that fluoridated toothpaste will prevent tooth decay in children.

The same authors were previously responsible for a very flawed and criticized study that showed a false association between fluoride toothpastes and a reduction of dental decay compared to non-fluoride products. The study was shown to be biased with non-supported conclusions and conflicts of interest.

In case your wondering, funding sources for such studies at the School of Dentistry, The University of Manchester come from the toothpaste industry. Actually, the British Dental Association has always received money from the toothpaste industry for endorsing fluoride-based products. The British Dental Association also provides financial support to the University of Manchester for many dental practices at the School of Dentistry. Get the picture?

There is unequivocally no safe amount of fluoride (whether sodium fluoride or hydrofluoric acid) that is safe for your child. Sodium fluoride is a very toxic chemical, acting as an enzyme poison, direct irritant and calcium inactivator. It reacts with growing tooth enamel and with bones to produce irreversible damage.

Austrian researchers proved in the 1970s that as little as 1 ppm fluoride concentration can disrupt DNA repair enzymes by 50%. Fluoride prematurely ages the body, mainly by distortion of enzyme shape.

Dr. Yiamouyiannis (former science director of the National Health Federation) cited a 1990 study of 541,000 cases of osteoporosis that found a definite connection between hip fractures in women over 65 and fluoride levels.

In JAMA 1994, extremely low levels of water fluoridation 0.1 ppm were found to produce a statistically significant increase in hip fractures.

According to the National Research Council (NRC), fluoride can damage the brain. Animal studies conducted in the 1990s by EPA scientists found dementia-like effects at the same concentration (1 ppm) used to fluoridate water, while human studies have found adverse effects on IQ at levels as low as 0.9 ppm among children with nutrient deficiencies, and 1.8 ppm among children with adequate nutrient intake.

According to the NRC, fluoride can diminish bone strength and increase the risk for bone fracture. While the NRC was unable to determine what level of fluoride is safe for bones, it noted that the best available information suggests that fracture risk may be increased at levels as low 1.5 ppm, which is only slightly higher than the concentration (0.7-1.2 ppm) added to water for fluoridation.

Fluoride was found to be an equivocal carcinogen by the National Cancer Institute Toxicological Program and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) scientists reported a close correlation between decreasing total fertility rates in women between ages of 10 and 49, and increasing fluoride levels.

Campaigners and parents are increasingly angry that the risks are not better publicised. In America, they point out, there is a mandatory warning on every tube of fluoridated toothpaste: “In case of accidental ingestion, seek professional assistance or contact a poison centre immediately.” Why are British consumers not given this information? Tony Lees, from Herefordshire, a dentist for 40 years, believes that fluoride should be banned from toothpastes and water. The marginal benefit it displays for teeth does not outweigh its general dangers, he says.

“In the scale of toxicity, fluorides fall between arsenic and lead,” he says. “Dental fluorosis is not just a cosmetic problem, but the visible sign of chronic fluoride poisoning, and children are more vulnerable than adults.”

Anyone overdosing on fluoride, he says, is in danger of developing chronic skeletal fluorosis, which can weaken bones and cause arthritis.

Marco Torres is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.

January 21, 2010

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