It’s a divisive issue, but is fluoride in water safe or should we filter it out? Fluoride is routinely added to our drinking water in the UK. However, there are pros and cons to adding fluoride to our water supply.
What is Fluoride?
Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral that’s found in trace amounts in the air we breathe, soil, plants, rocks, fresh water and seawater. Fluoride helps to keep bones and teeth strong by playing a part in the remineralisation process. In the human body, fluoride is mainly stored in bones and teeth.
Why is Water Fluoridated?
Fluoride was first added to drinking water supplies in 1964 in Birmingham. The scheme was then rolled out across the UK. It was hoped that by fluoridating the water supply, common dental problems such as cavities could be combatted on a nationwide level. The scheme was met with resistance as at the time there was a drive towards adding more and more chemicals to foods. Back then, people were sceptical of this government interference, and today the need for fluoridated water is still debatable.
In the present day, around 10-11% of the UK population is supplied with fluoridated water, with these schemes mainly located in the Midlands and the North East. Outside of England, the Republic of Ireland and Spain also have water fluoridation schemes.
Is Fluoridated Water Safe to Drink?
The safety of fluoridated water is a controversial topic. It is true that fluoride can help with dental health. However, it is the amount of fluoride we are exposed to on a daily basis that is the issue. Fluoridating the water does not take into account each individual’s tolerance to fluoride. The levels in tapwater may be more tolerable to some and not to others.
Exposure to fluoride through the water we drink may be pushing our fluoride intake to potentially unsafe levels. Most recently, scientists have found links to the certain health conditions and fluoride exposure. Research has shown that even low to moderate exposure to fluoride can lead to higher incidence of obesity.
Hypothyroidism is another health condition that can be brought on and exacerbated by drinking fluoridated water. A study revealed a correlation between participants with an impaired thyroid function and levels of fluoride in the local water supply. Other negative effects associated with fluoride exposure include cognitive impairment in children, dental and skeletal fluorosis and enzyme and electrolyte disruption.
Regarding benefits to dental care, it has been discovered that topical application of fluoride is more effective at protecting teeth. So, using fluoridated toothpaste is a better way to keep teeth healthy and strong, over drinking fluoridated water. Therefore, drinking fluoridated water is not necessarily helping with our daily dental care.
How Can I Avoid Fluoridated Water?
While substantial evidence over the safety of fluoridated tapwater is lacking, the best way to safeguard your health is to filter out fluoride. Not all water filters can remove or even reduce levels of fluoride in your drinking water. Aquatiere have developed a water filter system that can do just that! Purest Water is our newest water filter with fluoride filtering capabilities. Not only can Purest Water remove fluoride it can also filter out chlorine, prescription medicines and microplastics.
By installing a Purest Water filter system in your home you can avoid fluoridated water and the possible side effects that fluoride can cause. For more information please get in touch with our water filtration experts, they will be happy to answer your questions.