IDA affirms endorsement of water fluoridation

The Irish Dental Association (IDA) has adopted a consensus statement on the benefits of fluoridation, recommending that “all members of the profession continue to endorse the benefits of this important public dental health measure”.

A spokesman from the association said: “The Irish Dental Association strongly endorses water fluoridation as the most practical, cost effective and safe public health measure to control the occurrence of tooth decay in Ireland.

“The association endorses the evidence that suggests that water fluoridation, along with reduction in the frequency of intake of sugary foods and drinks, as well as tooth brushing with a toothpaste containing fluoride are the key approaches to reducing tooth decay for the people of Ireland.

“However, Ireland still needs the protection of water fluoridation as the Health Behaviour of School Aged Children surveys have shown that Irish children have very high levels of consumption of sugary foods and drinks as well as poor tooth-brushing habits.”

Community water fluoridation is endorsed by the World Health Organisation, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the EU Scientific Committee on Health and Environment Risks. The US Surgeon General has described water fluoridation as one of the top ten greatest public health measures of the 20th century.

The IDA spokesman continued: “The IDA recognises that water fluoridation is a contentious issue and is regularly debated in the media. The Irish Dental Association recommends that policymakers be guided by high quality, peer-reviewed evidence.

“The health effects of fluoride are continuously under review all around the world with no evidence of any adverse effects of community water fluoridation. Dental fluorosis in Ireland is a primarily aesthetic concern and is less difficult to treat than dental decay.”

Published: 22 November, 2013 at 18:14