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Letter of the Day: Fluoride makes sense

Fluoride makes sense

EDITOR: Many Sonoma County residents believe their water already contains optimal levels of fluoride when, in fact, the Sonoma County Water Agency does not fluoridate our water.

Fluoride exists naturally in water sources and is derived from fluorine. So the issue is whether to increase fluoride to a level that will help prevent tooth decay, not whether to "add" fluoride.

It is a scientifically recognized that fluoridating water supplies reduces tooth decay, which is particularly important in Sonoma County where 52 percent of third-graders have a history of tooth decay. According to the Centers for Disease Control, tooth decay is the most common chronic disease in children, five times more common than asthma.

More than two-thirds of the U.S. population is already served by fluoridation. More than 60 years of credible scientific evidence research has shown that fluoridation of water sources is safe. Do anti-fluoride activists realize that our water supply already includes other chemicals including chlorine?

Fluoridation is a safe and effective way to improve dental health for the entire community and a public health preventative action akin to immunization. I encourage everyone to get the facts by visiting the American Dental Association's website, ada.org/fluoride.

PAUL ANDERSEN

Petaluma


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