Board of Health Voted in Favour for Fluoridation of Toronto Drinking Water Continues

Board of Health Voted in Favour for Fluoridation of Toronto Drinking Water Continues

At a meeting on April 4, the Toronto Board of Health voted in favour of the continued fluoridation of Toronto drinking water.

The reasons for keeping fluoride in Toronto drinking water are:

  • “Fluoridation of water is the most cost-effective and equitable way to prevent dental decay for all residents.”
  • “Tooth decay is the single most common chronic disease among Canadians of all ages and poor oral health is linked to diabetes, heart disease and respiratory conditions.
  • Water fluoridation is, and must be recognized as, a very important public health measure,”
  • “The effectiveness of community water fluoridation in reducing dental decay has been endorsed by more than 90 national and international organizations, including Health Canada, the Canadian and Ontario Medical Associations, the Canadian Paediatric Society, the Ontario Dental Association, the Association of Local Public Health Agencies, the World Health Organization, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”
  • “Discontinuing the fluoridation of Toronto water would reduce the oral health status of Torontonians and result in increased costs for treatment of dental disease.”
  • Toronto’s drinking water has been fluoridated since 1963. The Board of Health last reaffirmed its position on fluoridation in 2007.

Please click here for the Board of Health Report – Water Fluoridation in Toronto, April 4, 2011.

Please note that Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health issued a statement reminding other Ontario municipalities of the important health benefits of fluoride.

Here is the Toronto Public Health fact sheet on fluoride and drinking water for your perusal:

November, 2010

Fluoride & Drinking Water

Fluoride is a mineral that occurs naturally in the environment. Fluoride is found in soil, air and water.

At appropriate levels, Fluoride in drinking water has been proven to significantly reduce cavities and dental decay.This finding is strongly supported by an extensive body of Canadian and international research, and has been commonly accepted in the scientific community for almost 70 years.

Scientific guidance on optimal fluoridation levels is routinely reviewed by expert panels convened by Health Canada and conveyed to all provinces and territories.

The most recent Health Canada review, undertaken in 2007, assessed the latest available evidence on the benefits and potential risks. This review concluded that there is no harmful health risk from the fluoridation of community drinking water at current levels and that fluoridation continues to be an effective public health strategy to prevent dental disease.

The City of Toronto’s policies and practices in drinking water fluoridation are guided by these expert reviews and recommendations. Toronto Public Health and Toronto Water are committed to ensuring the safety of the Toronto drinking water supply, and protecting the health of Toronto residents.

The dental benefits and safety of fluoridation of drinking water are strongly supported by many health organizations, including the Ontario Medical Association, the Canadian Dental Association, the Ontario Dental Association, the American Dental Association, the Public Health Dentists Association, the Chief Dentist of Canada and the International Association for Dental Research.

Fluoride has been added to the Toronto drinking water supply since 1963. Studies of Toronto children 12 years after the introduction of water fluoridation and again in 2000 show that by 2000, there was a 77.4% mean reduction in decayed, missing and filled baby teeth for five year-old children. There was also a 390% increase in the percentage of children with no tooth decay when compared to rates reported prior to the addition of fluoride in 1963.

This dramatic improvement in dental health is due to a combination of water fluoridation, other sources of fluoride (such as toothpaste), better nutrition and better dental preventive care. Water fluoridation plays an important role in a comprehensive approach to good dental health.

The current target level of fluoride in Toronto drinking water is 0.6 parts per million – a level which is less than the naturally occurring fluoride levels from a number of European and North American water sources, including parts of Ontario.

Fluoride levels in Toronto’s drinking water are regulated in Ontario under the Safe Drinking Water Act administered by the Ministry of the Environment.

Toronto Public Health will continue to monitor expert reviews and recommendations on water fluoridation from provincial, federal and international health research organizations to ensure Toronto residents continue to have appropriate levels of fluoride in drinking water.

Please click here for more info.

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

News Release

April 5, 2011

Toronto Board of Health supports continued fluoridation of drinking water

The Toronto Board of Health voted in favour of the continued fluoridation of Toronto drinking water at its meeting on April 4.

The Board of Health discussed fluoridation after requesting a report from the Medical Officer of Health at its January meeting.

“Fluoridation of water is the most cost-effective and equitable way to prevent dental decay for all residents, and that’s why cities across Canada and the United States continue to promote water fluoridation,” said Dr. David McKeown, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health.

Ontario’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Arlene King, spoke to the Board of Health in favour of water fluoridation, and issued a statement reminding other Ontario municipalities of the important health benefits of fluoride.

“Tooth decay is the single most common chronic disease among Canadians of all ages and poor oral health is linked to diabetes, heart disease and respiratory conditions. Water fluoridation is, and must be recognized as, a very important public health measure,” said Dr. King.

The effectiveness of community water fluoridation in reducing dental decay has been endorsed by more than 90 national and international organizations, including Health Canada, the Canadian and Ontario Medical Associations, the Canadian Paediatric Society, the Ontario Dental Association, the Association of Local Public Health Agencies, the World Health Organization, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Discontinuing the fluoridation of Toronto water would reduce the oral health status of Torontonians and result in increased costs for treatment of dental disease,” said Dr. McKeown.

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral and is found in rocks, soil and water. The amount of fluoride added to drinking water is regulated by provincial standards. At the current level, Toronto’s drinking water contains a lower level of fluoride than naturally occurring levels in some parts of Ontario.

Toronto’s drinking water has been fluoridated since 1963. The Board of Health last reaffirmed its position on fluoridation in 2007.

The report presented to the Board of Health is available at http://www.toronto.ca/health.

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. Toronto’s government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

2 Responses to “Board of Health Voted in Favour for Fluoridation of Toronto Drinking Water Continues”

  1. Tim says:

    The board of the Santa Clara Valley Water District (in California) held a public meeting March 22nd on water fluoridation. This summer they are scheduled to vote on whether or not to fluoridate the water supply. The board and their staff were given 20 copies of a 75-minute cd of doctors explaining the history, origin, and health hazards of this toxic waste. Doctors included John Lee, John Yiamouyannis, and Phyllis Mullenix. The audio is posted at the website http://www.MaeBrussell.com. Just go to the bottom of the homepage.

    If people were to burn a cd of that audio and spread it around (especially to churches, schools, health food stores and health clubs) you might find it very effective in waking up the public in your area. Good luck.

  2. editor says:

    Hi Tim,

    Thank you for sharing your info and for your interesting comments.

    Good luck with the situation on the board of the Santa Clara Valley Water District (in California) voting on whether or not to fluoridate the water supply!

    Please let us know the outcome of this summer vote.

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