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Fluorosis or Fibromyalgia?

January 8th, 2011

Photo of Anti-Fluoride Protest Signs by Ben Kraal. creative commons license non-commercial use

Just yesterday the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), along with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced new recommendations for the amount of Fluoride that should be in our drinking water. In 1962, the recommended range was set at 0.7 to 1.2 milligrams per liter. Now it is being recommended that amount of Fluoride added to our drinking water be lowered to 0.7 milligrams, the lower end of the range.

The change is being made now, according to an administration official, because the current range is out of date. He said that in the 1960s, when fluoridating water began, air conditioning was much less common. So children in hotter regions drank more water and needed lower levels of fluoride to protect their teeth, while children in colder climates drank less water and needed higher levels.

“Now since air conditioning is so common,” the official said, “you don’t see those differences in consumption, and that’s why they’re getting rid of the range and recommending one level.”1

By their own logic, shouldn’t they be recommending the higher dose of Fluoride? But you see the problem is children and adults are now getting too much Fluoride from a variety of sources, not just drinking water. A child could get more than the recommended daily allowance just by swallowing too much of the wrong kind of toothpaste, but you will also find fluoride lurking in a variety of processed foods and beverages2.

Dentists are seeing an increase in Fluorosis, which causes permanent pitting and loss of enamel on teeth. Paul Connett, executive director of the Fluoride Action Network states that “Our kids are being overexposed. They are getting four times more fluoride than the original promoters of fluoridation intended.”3 Although the new levels have been sent to the Federal Register, it is likely the final verdict on the matter will not be expected until this spring. Even then, it is up to local agencies to regulate the levels they put into their drinking water.

The Environmental Working Group has been working on exposing the dangers of water Fluoridation since 2005, when it found that a Harvard professor conducting a fluoridation safety study had ignored research by Dr. Elise B. Bassin that had suggested that boys who drank fluoridated water were five times more likely to develop bone cancer than those who drank unfluoridated water. Besides being linked to bone cancer, exposure to Fluoride is also linked to neurotoxicity and disruption of thyroid function4. Could Fluoride also be linked to Fibromyalgia?

Many of the symptoms association with Skeletal Fluorosis are similiar to some of those associated with Fibromyalgia, including, sporadic pain, stiffness of joints, chronic joint pain, arthritic symptoms and limitation of joint movement5.

More Resources:
Fluoride Questions and Answers (PDF)
Fluoride Action Network
How to Avoid Fluoride

  1. Government Recommends Lowering Fluoride Levels in U.S. Drinking Water at CNN.com []
  2. The Fluoride Glut: Sources of Fluoride Exposure []
  3. Fluoride in Drinking Water Should Be Capped, HHS Says []
  4. Health/Toxics: Fluoride by the Environmental Working Group []
  5. Skeletal Fluorosis on Fibrotalk []

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