Community Water Fluoridation
This collection of selected resources offers high-quality information about fluoridated community water. Use the tools below for further searching, or contact us for personalized assistance.
- Community water fluoridation is the best method for delivering fluoride to all members of the community regardless of age, educational attainment, income level, or access to routine oral care. 1
- Community water fluoridation is a major factor responsible for the decline in prevalence and severity of dental caries (tooth decay) during the second half of the 20th century. 2
- Consuming fluoridated water and beverages, and foods prepared or processed with fluoridated water, throughout the day maintains a low concentration of fluoride that enhances remineralization of tooth surfaces. 3
- Community water fluoridation has been shown to save money, both for families and for the health care system. The return on investment for community water fluoridation varies with size of the community, increasing as the community size increases. Community water fluoridation is cost-saving, even for small communities. 4
- Community water fluoridation is an effective public health strategy for delivering fluoride to prevent tooth decay and is the most feasible and cost-effective way to reach entire communities. 3
- The addition of fluoride to community water supplies results in reduced incidence of tooth decay within a short period of time, and the elimination of fluoride from community water supplies results in increased incidence of tooth decay within a short period of time. These results have been consistently found regardless of date of analysis; this illustrates that benefits of community water fluoridation persist even in an era of availability of fluoride from other sources. 5
- To be prepared and motivated to promote water fluoridation, dental school graduates need to be aware that water fluoridation promotion is an important public health issue, possess sound scientific knowledge about fluorides and water fluoridation, have experience discussing fluorides and water fluoridation with patients, have critical evaluative skills, and possess a professional and moral incentive to act. 6
- Oral-health-promotion activities should take into account differing perceptions about community water fluoridation among various groups to tailor educational messaging. 7
- Further research is needed on interventions to reduce common barriers to oral fluoride administration and reduce early childhood caries in communities lacking water fluoridation. 8
- Murthy VH. 2015. Surgeon general’s perspectives: Community water fluoridation–One of CDC’s “10 great public health achievements of the 20th century.” Public Health Reports 130(4):296–298.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 1999. Achievements in public health, 1900–1999: Fluoridation of drinking water to prevent dental caries. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 48(41):933–940.
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Federal Panel on Community Water Fluoridation. 2015. U.S. Public Health Service recommendation for fluoride concentration in drinking water for the prevention of dental caries. Public Health Reports 130(4):318–331.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 2015. Community Water Fluoridation: Fluoridation Basics [webpage].
- Campos-Outcalt D, Celaya M, Nunez A, Rosales C. 2012. Community Water Fluoridation: An Evidence Review. Tucson, AZ: University of Arizona, Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health.
- Melbye ML, Armfield JM. 2013. The dentist’s role in promoting community water fluoridation: A call for dentists and educators. Journal of the American Dental Association 144(1):65–75.
- Mork N, Griffen S. 2015. Perceived safety and benefit of community water fluoridation: 2009 HealthStyles survey. Journal of Public Health Dentistry 75(4):327–336.
- Flood S, Asplund K, Hoffman B, Nye A, Zuckerman K. 2016. Fluoride supplementation adherence and barriers in a community without water fluoridation. Academic Pediatrics [Epub ahead of print].
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