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Science, Health and Technology
Mon November 26, 2012
Columbia to study city use of fluoride in water
The city of Columbia is now reviewing the use of fluoride in the city’s water supply.
Some concerned Columbia residents are asking the city to stop adding fluoride in to the public drinking water.
Adding fluoride to water became common practice in the 1940s as a way to prevent cavities in both children and adults. However, Columbia resident Amy Bremer presented information about the dangers of fluoride ingestion at the City Council meeting last week.
Sixth Ward Council member Barbara Hoppe asked city staff to look further into Bremer’s research and draft a report by early December. Hoppe says she is concerned with the possible negative effects.
“The articles I’ve read in the past were that additional fluoride wasn’t good for your bone density as you got older. So I thought it was worthwhile to take a second look at the research and how it works or doesn’t work for Columbia,” Hoppe says.
Hoppe says if the city decides to stop using fluoride, the money saved could be used to promote dental health instead. It costs about 50,000 dollars for Columbia to add fluoride into the water.
Department of Public Health and Human Services spokesperson Geni Alexander says the department is now studying the city’s water and the Board of Health will be reviewing the results.
“They will be looking at both sides of the issue and research on both sides of the issue and are coming back with a recommendation,” Alexander says.
The Board of Health will meet in January 2013 to determine whether to continue adding fluoride to the water.