D’oh. My family has a history of crappy teeth – both of my parents have had root canals (my sister and I, who had the benefit of fluoridated water from a young age, have not). I guess I have something to look forward to…
Having the city regulate the amount of a mineral that is already present in the water is hardly the same thing as forcing medication on the population against their collective will. It’s supplementing something that is already there for maximum benefit. Moreover, two plebiscites on this issue in this city indicated that the majority are in favour of fluoridated water – this latest decision was made by 10 people who decided they know what’s best for the people and shot down the notion of once again asking the people what they want, since there was a very real chance that they’d make it 3-for-3 in favour. Now if people would like to exercise their free will to move somewhere where there isn’t any naturally occurring fluoride in the water (good luck with that, by the way), I’d say go for it. When they start adding valium to the water to help take the edge off everyone, that’s when I’ll start listening to this line of thinking as making any kind of sense (then again, I’ll probably be mellowed out to the point of not caring).
Do you have any idea how flammable oxygen is? That stuff can kill you dead! We need to get rid of it right this very instant!
Japan and (with a few exceptions) Europe generally do not fluoridate their water, and a few European countries fluoridated for a while and then stopped (Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands).
If I’m not mistaken, studies have shown that tooth decay rates in the developed world have been dropping sharply over the last 40 or so years in both fluoridated and unfluoridated countries and are currently all clustered pretty close together.
So, it was the lack of fluoride in the water (which we both agree occurs naturally), rather than the lack of regular brushing with fluoride based toothpaste that caused the problems with their teeth rather than yours?
By removing the fluoride from the water, even given Tom’s claim that countries with and without added fluoride have about the same amounts of tooth decay, you will suddenly require root canals and dentures? Are you going to stop brushing your teeth when they remove the fluoride?
5 or 6 plebiscites* actually and only the last one passed with about a 52% Yes vote for fluoride. All the rest failed. And now those people who were elected to represent us chose not to spend the 6 million upgrade cost and $750K/year to keep doing something that was passed by the narrowest margin in one of 6 votes done on the matter. No, I don’t have much of an issue with them making the decision and not put it up for a 6th or 7th vote.
*Google Fu not working well today. Kind of hard to nail down the exact amount because I’d either end up linking to the ‘No’ side, comprised mainly of crackpots, or the ‘Yes’ side (do-gooders, or shall I suggest a new term, “Nannyites”) who want to ignore the number of past ‘No’ votes and focus only on the latest vote that supports their idea that the ‘majority’ want fluoride.
I guess you’ll have to move somewhere where they inject fluoride now, won’t you? Unless you can figure out an easy, effective and simple way of getting the fluoride you might need. I wonder how you could do that?
I can already see you are following your advice because if you had the proper amount of oxygen in your brain you would have understood from and earlier post of mine where I said I didn’t have any issue with the natural amounts of fluoride in the water.
Obviously I will continue to brush my teeth, but the usual brushing and flossing did not save my parents from a bunch of dental surgery. It would follow logically that my teeth are also in more serious jeopardy now without that extra fluoride kick from the water.
The plebiscites that count are the ones in 1989 that introduced fluoridation to the water and the subsequent one that approved continuing the process. The “all the rest” to which you are referring (with which I’m not familiar, to be honest) all came before the city began supplementing our fluoride supply. Since those previous failed plebiscites changed nothing, they’re kind of irrelevant to the discussion. That fact that the suggestion of another plebiscite was raised this time around and promptly shot down by council in an effort to railroad this proposal through is what I take issue with.
As to the costs you have noted, I consider less than a dollar per year to supplement the dental health of every citizen to be a bargain. And the $6 million dollar upgrade that has recently been talked about is all part of an overall municipal water treatment upgrades package that has cost the city about $315 million dollars in the last 7 years. You might also be interested to know that further renovations at the Glenmore Water Treatment Plant, to bring the Dam and the original section of the plant up to 21st century specs from their 1933 design specs, along with also fully renovating the 1957 addition, could cost upwards of another $40 million when all is said and done. The $6 million in upgrades to the doping system is all part and parcel of that process and will likely be done regardless of whether there’s fluoride in the water or not.
The thought of relocating to a more sane location has crossed my mind.
Just to be sure my oxygen-deprived brain has your argument straight, are you suggesting that having water with naturally occurring, but unregulated levels of fluoride is fine but that having the city measure and moderate the level to a proven optimal level is not? That’s about the most irrational bit of “reasoning” I’ve heard in a while, frankly.
Come to Lethbridge. We have fluoride, but there is a push to get rid of it. Cite. Nice thing is, that we’re small enough that you can actually know your councillors and mayor, and can influence local decisions.
Not sure if I could remain sane while dealing with the constant, howling wind down there.
As luck would have it, I happen to be on a first-name basis with Calgary’s current mayor – I’ve known him since our university days back in the mid-90s. So I guess Calgary is like Lethbridge in that respect.
I think you and Cat Whisperer need to chill and take another nice road trip. Come to Wisconsin, where the new Republican governor is proposing to cut state workers pay and benefits by 15%, outlaw unions for public employees, and stated that he has alerted the Wisconsin National Guard to be ready in case of “trouble”.
Nothing like a naked threat of force to make folks happy!
First of all, even assuming there have been 5 or 6 plebiscites over the years, rather than the 2 that have been recently reported on (and you’ve brought no evidence to the table of any of the “no” votes), what we have is a precedent handed down for at least the last 22 years that this is an issue City Council has deemed worthy of having the citizens vote on. The fact that Team Druh, on the say-so of a handful of noisy busy-bodies, has decided that they know better than the citizenry who have repeatedly voted in favour of fluoridation is what gets my goat. In fact, if there have been 5 or 6 votes over the years, that just makes the plebiscite precedent that much stronger and the decision to not hold a plebiscite this time that much more offensive to me. Strong leadership from City Council, in this case, would have been deciding to once again let the people choose – this just smacks of business as usual from the people who brought us the $25 million Peace Bridge in the dumbest possible location for a pedestrian bridge (in Druh’s Ward, of course), without going through the proper channels or process. And, as I noted in the OP, I am disappointed in Mayor Nenshi for washing his hands of the whole thing and just letting the crazies in Silly Hall go back to doing things the way they like to do them.
As to the studies mentioned upthread, I have never seen one that definitively refuted that notion that people in areas with fluoridated water have no additional benefit over people in areas without – in Europe, where the water generally is not fluoridated, table salt is available with fluoridation, for example, and studies have not adequately factored in these sorts of regional differences. In fact, several studies I have been specifically directed to by anti-fluoridationists (such as former alderman/former MLA Jon Lord) have been thoroughly debunked as outright bad science for glaring mistakes in the research. If you can show me a study that truly calls into question water fluoridation’s place in the CDC’s 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century, I will happily reconsider my position.
Also, since you seem to have invented the notion somewhere along the line that I don’t brush my teeth: yes I do.
Finally, thanks for tacitly conceding my point upthread about your irrational argument against supplementing the fluoride already present in the water. Much appreciated.
Mmmmm… cheese and naked threats of force… Sounds like my kind of vacation!
Well I am not so sure that anyone who disagrees with me is stupid.
It seems (new research) that we dont know know the mechanism by which fluoride works. It could well be something else (or a combination ) working in a way we dont understand at this time. Could it be totally safe and effective, sure. I am less sure that fluoride is the reason for the reduction in dental caries rather than the general increase in dental hygiene. However to say that the science is done and we know all there is to know about flouride is a little premature.
“New studies show that this coating might not be as effective as once thought. In fact, it is probably at least 10 times less effective than scientists originally thought. The fluorapatite layer is only 6 nanometers thick, according to this research, which is about 1/10,000 the width of a human hair. A layer that thin could easily be worn off with normal chewing and would do little to actually protect the teeth, so researchers are now trying to discover the actual function of fluoride.”
If this finding can be reproduced it might mean new methods of protecting teeth from decay, that would be a good thing.
It seems more likely now that it interacts with saliva in an yet unknown way to help prevent decay. point is we don’t seem to know just what that mechanism is.
As always, MRIR. (More Research is Recommended).