Q. I've heard fluoride is good for strong bones, but is fluoridated water safe?
A. True, fluoride is good for strong bones. It stimulates new bone formation throughout the life cycle, thus offering some protection from developing osteoporosis. Critics claim fluoridated water is unsafe, is ineffective in preventing tooth decay and may cause cancer. However, a critical analysis of the science conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in 2001 and endorsed by the American Dental Association concluded, “When used appropriately, fluoride is a safe and effective agent that can be used to prevent and control dental caries. Fluoride has contributed profoundly to the improved dental health of persons in the United States and other countries. To ensure additional gains in oral health, water fluoridation should be extended to additional communities, and fluoride toothpaste should be used widely.” Additionally, the American Cancer Society asserts there is no strong evidence for a link between cancer and fluoridated water. The bottom line: If your community water source contains added fluoride, drink it. The general scientific consensus is that fluoride is good for your teeth and bones.