Safety l Fluoridation Facts 47 25. When fluoride is ingested, where does it go? Answer. Much of the ingested fluoride is excreted. Of the fluoride retained, almost all is found in calcified (hard) tissues, such as bones and teeth. Fact. After ingestion of fluoride, such as drinking a glass of fluoridated water, the majority of the fluoride is absorbed from the stomach and small intestine into the blood stream. This causes a short-term increase in fluoride levels in the blood. Fluoride is distributed through the body by plasma (a component of blood) to hard and soft tissues. Following ingestion, the fluoride plasma levels increase quickly and reach a peak concentration within 20-60 minutes. The concentration declines rapidly, usually approximating the baseline levels within three to six hours, due to the uptake of fluoride by calcified tissues and excretion in urine. In adults, approximately 50% of the fluoride absorbed each day becomes associated with calcified tissues within 24 hours while the remainder is excreted in the urine. Approximately 99% of the fluoride present in the body is in calcified tissues (mainly bone).52 Ingested or systemic fluoride becomes incorporated into forming tooth structures. Fluoride ingested regularly during the time when teeth are developing is deposited throughout the tooth structure and contributes to long lasting protection against tooth decay.53-57 Additional information on this topic can be found in the Benefits Section, Question 2. An individual’s age and stage of skeletal development will affect the rate of fluoride retention. The amount of fluoride taken up by bone and retained in the body is inversely related to age. A greater percentage of fluoride is absorbed in young bones than in the bones of older adults.52 However, once fluoride is absorbed into bones, it is released back into plasma (a component of blood) when fluoride levels in plasma fall. This absorption and release cycle continues throughout the life span.52 26. Will drinking water that is fluoridated at the recommended level adversely affect bone health? Answer. According to the best available science, drinking water that has been fluoridated at the recommended level does not have an adverse effect on bone health. Fact. Several systematic reviews have concluded that fluoride at the level used in community water fluoridation has no adverse effect on bone health. A systematic review published in 2000 concluded that there was no clear association between water fluoridation and hip fracture.59 Twenty-nine studies that looked at the association between bone fracture/ bone development and water fluoridation were included in the review. The evidence regarding other types of bone fractures was similar.59 A systematic review published in 201710 concurred with the earlier review concluding that there is evidence that fluoridated water at recommended levels is not associated with bone fracture.10 In addition to the systematic reviews, a number of individual studies have investigated the bone health of individuals residing in communities with fluoride in drinking water at the recommended levels and higher than recommended levels. Most of these studies have focused on whether there exists a possible link between fluoride and bone fractures. Additionally, the possible association between fluoride and bone cancer has been studied. None of the studies provide a legitimate reason for altering public health policy regarding fluoridation and bone health concerns. The following studies, listed in chronological order, add to the body of evidence indicating that there is no association between consumption of optimally fluoridated water and bone fracture. The Iowa Fluoride Study/Iowa Bone Development Study60 looked at the association of fluoride intake with bone measures (bone mineral content and bone mineral density) in a cohort of Iowa children. Assessment of the participants’ dietary fluoride intake had been ongoing since birth with parents completing detailed fluoride questionnaires at numerous time periods through 15 years of age. These children had combined fluoride intake estimated from a number of sources including water, other beverages, selected
Previous Page Next Page