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There may be merit to adding fluoride to water
Oct 20, 2012 2:30 pm
It may be a little premature to completely jump on the bandwagon of adding fluoride to Lebanon’s water supply, but after hearing what dentist Dr. Chad Williams has to say on the issue, it’s certainly worth consideration.
Williams spoke Tuesday to the Lebanon Rotary Club at its lunch meeting, outlining the need for more of the compound to be added to the city’s water supply.
What he said made sense, but it comes with a $120,000 price tag.
“No dentist in town opposes fluoride in the water,” Williams said. “In all honesty, we will all probably be crying all the way to the bank if we don’t start adding fluoride to the water again.”
Williams said the city stopped adding fluoride by hand to the water supply in 2005 shortly after Hurricane Katrina demolished the Gulf Coast in Louisiana and Mississippi. He said the business that supplied the city with the fluoride granules that were added to the water supply was damaged and unable to continue to produce the compound. Because the fluoride supply stopped, the regular addition to the water also stopped.
And, according to the dentist, the effects are starting to show. Williams said he has seen an increase in cavities in patients who previously had none, as well as deeper cavities in patients.
During the meeting, Williams listed a number of misconceptions about adding fluoride to the water supply. He said, contrary to belief, fluoride doesn’t cause cancer, allergic reactions, autism and isn’t banned in Europe, among other things.
If, in fact, Williams is right and the benefits outweigh the risks, there may be a need to bring back the practice we have been without for more than six years.
Right now, Mayor Philip Craighead and other city leaders have a decision to make, and we hope they contact other cities, such as Mt. Juliet and Gallatin, already adding fluoride to their water supplies and do more research so that decision is the most informed possible.
If there is merit to what Williams is saying – and we have no reason to believe otherwise – this decision should be an easy one for the sake of everyone’s health.