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A Message from the Alberta Dental Association & College

The Alberta Dental Association and College published an important message about benefits of community water fluoridation.

A long-time contested issue, the fluoride debate has been going on for a while in Calgary with voices calling for its elimination from community water. 

Here are a number of Alberta-based dentists who enumerate the benefits and the drawbacks of eliminating fluoridated community water.

Please share this message as widely as possible within your personal and professional networks. 

CDA Position on Use of Fluorides in Caries Prevention

CDA Oasis Team


  1. Dr. Hardy Limeback October 25, 2019

    I have no doubt that these dentists THINK they are seeing the effects of dropping the fluoride level in Calgary from 0.7 ppm to around 0.3 ppm (natural) when fluoridation ended in 2011 in Calgary. But they truly are incapable of making those observations without doing careful studies. Clearly those statements are, if anything, anecdotal experiences that are quite exaggerated and not based on any science.

    Fluoridation can really only save maybe one tooth per person from dental decay after 40 years (based on the most recent ecological studies such as Slade et al, 2014, Do et al, 2017, Slade et al, 2018). Remember that there has not been a single randomized double-blinded clinical trial to prove fluoridation works. In fact the lack of blinding can explain the apparent benefit from fluoridation.

    (Holman L, Head ML, Lanfear R, Jennions MD (2015) Evidence of Experimental Bias in the Life Sciences: Why We Need Blind Data Recording. PLoS Biol 13(7): e1002190.).

    The dentists in the video did not mention objectionable dental fluorosis caused by fluoridation (one in ten patients) and failed to mention the several studies linking prenatal fluoride exposure (at the level of fluoridation) to …..

    1. lowered IQ in the offspring

    (Green R, Lanphear B, Hornung R, Flora D, Martinez-Mier EA, Neufeld R, Ayotte
    P, Muckle G, Till C. Association Between Maternal Fluoride Exposure During
    Pregnancy and IQ Scores in Offspring in Canada. JAMA Pediatr. 2019 Aug 19.)

    2. increased ADHD in the offspring

    (Bashash M, Marchand M, Hu H, Till C, Martinez-Mier EA, Sanchez BN, Basu N,
    Peterson KE, Green R, Schnaas L, Mercado-García A, Hernández-Avila M, Téllez-Rojo
    MM. Prenatal fluoride exposure and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder
    (ADHD) symptoms in children at 6-12 years of age in Mexico City. Environ Int.
    2018 Dec;121(Pt 1):658-666.)

    New evidence has shown that living in a fluoridated community can further decrease thyroid function in iodine deficient Canadians.

    (Malin AJ, Riddell J, McCague H, Till C. Fluoride exposure and thyroid function
    among adults living in Canada: Effect modification by iodine status. Environ Int.
    2018 Dec;121(Pt 1):667-674.)

    There are so many other side effects of fluoride ingestion from fluoridated water that are ignored by dentists.

    The US National Toxicology Program reviewed the human literature and said “NTP concludes that fluoride is presumed to be a cognitive neurodevelopmental hazard to humans” even at low dose exposure. Read the report here. https://src.bna.com/MiR

    So I ask: is one tooth saved per person worth damaging our kids’ brains and endocrine systems?

    We now know that fluoridation causes more harm than good.

    Fluoridation is immoral and unethical and ALL of Canada should follow the example of BC, Quebec and 95% of the rest of the world’s population and go fluoridation free. In a few short years Canada went from 2/3 fluoridated to 1/3.

    The dentists in that video are offering their own emotional, passionate political opinions, rather than evidence-based dentistry. Aren’t we expected to weigh the risks vs benefits for any therapy we recommend?

    I see that that the Canadian Dental Association still recommends the maximum ingestion of fluoride in babies to be 0.05 to 0.07 mg/kg/day. https://www.cda-adc.ca/_files/position_statements/fluoride.pdf
    This is impossible to achieve in infants fed formula made with fluoridated tap water.

    The Canadian Dental Association should sponsor a workshop to update its fluoride recommendations, which are drastically out of date, given all the new evidence of fluoride’s side effects.

  2. Christine Massey, M.Sc. October 29, 2019

    Thank you to the Fluoride Action Network and brave, outspoken experts like Dr. Hardy Limeback for showing the world that the peer-reviewed science does not support the anecdotal evidence of the dentists is this video: https://www.fluoridefreepeel.ca/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/FAN-Fluoride-Efficacy-Flyer-Print-FINAL-Dec.-2018.pdf

    And that the McLaren Calgary study is seriously (and suspiciously) flawed, despite all the media hype: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28994462#

    And that 6 studies (all of the available evidence) now show that fluoride exposure during pregnancy is associated with lower childhood IQ: http://fluoridealert.org/issues/moms2b/mother-offspring-studies/

    I sent formal FOI records requests to 9 institutions in Ontario, Alberta and Washington State. None were able to cite even 1 study indicating safety during pregnancy. All of the available evidence suggests harm, not safety: https://www.fluoridefreepeel.ca/no-fluoride-pregnancy-studies-suggest-safety-re-iq-or-adhd/

  3. Robert Jost October 30, 2019

    The passionate speakers above cite evidence that are not a double blind studies that are expected of dentists and are flawed in their own ways.
    Perhaps they think having to send a child to the hospital for treatment under general anesthetic also has no risk… after all it’s just a tooth.
    In my opinion the above comments are exactly what they accuse dentist of “ offering their own emotional, passionate political opinions”
    Dr Robert Jost

    1. Dr. Hardy Limeback October 31, 2019

      Thank you for you comment Dr. Jost. If double blinded, randomized clinical trials were done, in the presence of the regular use of toothpaste (even people frequenting food banks use fluoridated toothpaste) my prediction is that there would be NO measurable increase in the numbers of children who need to be sent to the hospital for rampant dental decay treatment. Rampant dental decay in the primary dentition is not a fluoridate-deficiency problem- it’s a problem directly linked to
      1. baby bottle tooth decay
      2. sugar abuse in toddlers
      3. no access to dental services
      4. poor dietary choices and habits (frequent between meal snacks on fermentable carbohydrates)
      but then you probably know all that.

      I was astounded by how many patients told me they could not find a dentist in my area who would accept remuneration provided by social services dental programs. Those patients did not have access to dental care until they found me. I always accepted patients on welfare. I prevented a lot of hospitalizations with HealOzone treatment and glass ionomer cements (yes, fluoride releasing ones) applied without anesthetic. My practice was in fluoridated Peel Region (Brampton, then Mississauga).

      There is no evidence that fluoridation prevents hospitalization of young children with rampant dental decay.

    2. Christine Massey, M.Sc. October 31, 2019

      Safe water advocates point out the flaws in effectiveness studies because you should have proof of effectiveness before mass-dosing an entire community, should you not? Yet after all these decades, still, not one single RCT of fluoridated water has been conducted (and we realize you can’t randomize communities, no one is asking for that) .

      We point out evidence of harm (despite imperfections in studies) because it’s unconscionable to dose an entire community without complete confidence of safety. To my understanding, no definitive studies exist or ever will because it’s considered unethical to conduct human RCTS to investigate harm. Any study that you look at investigating potential harm will have imperfections.

      When all 6 studies on exposure during pregnancy and childhood IQ indicate lower IQs (and none suggest safety) can any reasonable person can have confidence of safety?

      I don’t think anyone is denying the suffering associated with cavities.

      All safe water advocates I know want real dental care for those with decay. Not uncontrolled dosing without consent using something that the U.S. National Toxicology Program just declared a presumed neurodevelopmental hazard to humans (the strongest possible classification without an RCT – which can’t be done to investigate harm) and contaminated with arsenic, lead, etc.

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