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Too much fluoride can ruin the bones.

Fluoride is known for its protective abilities in regard to tooth enamel, but too much of a good thing, in this case, can definitely cause a problem.

A study published in the Journal of the American Dental Association in 2000 states that overuse of fluoride toothpaste in very young children can cause dental fluorosis, a condition that makes unsightly discolorations appear on the surface of the teeth. The discolorations can be concealed by bleaching, but damage to permanent teeth that are still developing in the gums can be troublesome.

Excessive fluoridation can also lead to skeletal fluorosis, a bone disease that can cause permanent hunchback, prohibitively stiff joints, and leg deformation.

Skeletal fluorosis in epidemic form was discovered in Kizilcaoern, Turkey, a small village where the people suffer from premature aging, thickening of the ankles, impotence, and a high rate of births after only four or five months of gestation. The fluoride content of the well water was said to be 5.4 parts per million (p.p.m.), almost five times as much fluoride that is present in American water supplies.

In India, scientists have found fluoride-related bone disorders in people who consume water that having as little as 0.7 p.p.m..

* Tooth decay is the single most common chronic childhood disease. It is five times more common than asthma and seven times more common than hay fever.

(Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 2000. Oral Health in America.)

* Socioeconomic disparities affect oral health. More than a third of poor adults have at least one untreated, decayed tooth, compared with 11 percent of non-poor adults.

(Source: National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. 2002.)

* At least 36 million people in the United States have periodontitis.

(Source: Journal of Periodontology 70, 13-29.)

* More than 108 million children and adults lack dental insurance in the United States, which is more than two and a half times the number of people without medical insurance.

(Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 2000. Oral Health in America.)
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Publication:Nutrition Health Review
Geographic Code:00WOR
Date:Jun 22, 2003
Words:343
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