The following information was given to us by the City of Fort Smith.
As you should be aware, Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) passed Act 197 in 2011 mandating water systems serving five thousand persons or more “to control the quantity of fluoride in the water so as to maintain a fluoride content established by the Department of Health”.
With a grant funded by the Delta Dental Foundation the City of Fort Smith’s two drinking water treatment plants have undergone and are nearing completion of upgrades which will allow fluoridation of the drinking water.
On Monday, March 7, 2016, the City of Fort Smith will begin fluoridating the drinking water. In accordance with the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) April 2015 recommendation, the fluoridation level of 0.7 mg/L will be used to provide public health benefits but prevent fluorosis of teeth and bones.
There have been studies conducted that have shown increased risks for certain populations resulting from fluoridation that you may wish to contact:
- Infants: The CDC suggests there may be an increased chance of dental fluorosis for infants drinking formula mixed with fluoridated water. Most formulas contain low levels of fluoride; mixing these formulas with fluoridated water may result in staining or a change in the appearance of the tooth’s surface. Using low-fluoride bottled water in place of fluoridated tap water to mix formulas reduces the risk of dental fluoridation in infants.
- Elderly: The World Health Organization suggests that chronic over-ingestion of fluoride could result in skeletal fluorosis. The elderly are more susceptible to skeletal fluorosis and have a heightened risk of bone fractures with exposure to fluoridated water.
- Dialysis Patients: Dialysis patients are more susceptible to overexposure to fluoride because their kidneys are not able to properly remove fluoride from the blood and out of the body. This causes dialysis patients to retain higher levels of fluoride.