Sunday, 5 April 2015
Water Fluoridation – What You Need to Know
Water fluoridation is being used around the world. Adding fluoride to drinking water in residential areas is helping reduce the risk of tooth decay in children and adults. Fluoridation has been a hot debate in the United Kingdom for many years, according to leading dentist and specialist oral surgeon, Dr Tariq Drabu, which has resulted in some areas benefiting from the water and others still deciding whether to include it into the systems.
Fluoride is a mineral which strengthens the enamel on teeth and prevents decay. It is found naturally in water, though not at high enough levels to have an impact on teeth. Scientists have tested the water by adding more fluoride to benefit households throughout the world on a daily basis.
Fluoridation in water can dramatically reduce tooth decay, especially in children, with the CDD backing the system and describing it as one of the ten greatest public health inventions in the 20th century. In most instances the public is only aware of fluoride in their toothpaste and mouth wash, some aren’t aware that their area already benefits from fluoridation in the water supplied to their homes.
Unfortunately not all areas within the United Kingdom have embraced water fluoridation, a solution which could save the National Health Service millions in the long run. Some areas have reservations based on potential risks of the water; some believe it could result in negative side effects in the future.
According to Dr Tariq Drabu, over six million people in the United Kingdom enjoy the benefits of water fluoridation, that’s ten per cent of the UK population compared to seventy four per cent of the US population who are taking advantage of this mineral to reduce tooth decay.
In the areas that have water fluoridation, forty five per cent less children are admitted to hospital when compared to areas that haven’t embraced this water solution. It has also been recorded that fifteen per cent of five year olds and eleven per cent of twelve year olds have a decrease in tooth decay.
Water fluoridation is going to be a top topic among departments and health professionals for many years to come as areas throughout the country identify if this is the best method to choose moving forward. The results are proven, just by the volume of children being admitted to hospital for oral health problems. Children in non-fluoride areas are much higher than those in water fluoridation areas.
In Cumbria alone, more than one hundred and twenty thousand people benefit from water fluoridation which was introduced to the area in the late 1960’s and more than six hundred thousand are benefitting in Tyneside, which was also introduced in the 1960’s.
Reports show that more than five million seven hundred people enjoy the benefits of artificially treated water fluoridation, these are areas where there wasn’t enough fluoride in the water and a further three hundred thousand benefit from natural fluoride water in their homes.
Water fluoridation is being used worldwide from United States to Africa and Europe to Asia. The results seen in the reduction of tooth decay is proven and therefore countries are embracing adding this mineral to their main water supply to help residents enjoy good oral health moving forward.
Areas that aren’t benefiting from water fluoridation yet, should follow a strict oral health routine at home with regular dental check-ups, according to Tariq Drabu. Patients should be brushing their teeth twice daily with fluoride toothpaste, once before bed. They should also floss.
In addition to this, Dr Tariq Drabu also advised that diet plays a big role in dental health. A healthy and well-balanced diet with limited sugar and acidic foods can help keep teeth and gums healthy moving forward.