WEST ALLIS, WIS., Oct. 11, 2012 – Seven Wisconsin communities have been recognized for helping prevent tooth decay among residents through public water fluoridation.
Community Water Fluoridation Reaffirmation Awards go to Alma, Avoca and Mount Horeb in recognition of local officials continuing to fluoridate the water supply at the level recommended for public health benefits.
These annual awards are sponsored by the American Dental Association, Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Adding or maintaining optimal levels of fluoride in drinking water has been a safe, effective and economical public health practice for 67 years. The CDC has proclaimed community water fluoridation one of the top 10 public health achievements of the 20th century, along with greater use of vaccines and recognition of tobacco as a health hazard.
Fluoride is a naturally-occurring compound in the environment. Peer-reviewed, credible, scientific evidence shows fluoridation to be safe, effective and economical.
Verifiable science confirms community water fluoridation prevents at least 25 percent (conservative estimate) of tooth decay in children and adults throughout a lifetime and at all socioeconomic levels.
Fluoride is also economical – a lifetime of fluoridated water costs about the same as one dental filling. Studies show every dollar invested in water fluoridation saves $38 in dental treatment costs.
“Water fluoridation is proven safe and benefits the oral health of all residents, regardless of their income or age. It is one of the best investments for the nation’s public health dollar,” says Wisconsin Dental Association President Dr. Steve Stoll, a general dentist in Neenah, Wis.
Wisconsin is a national leader in fluoridation with 90 percent of state residents on community water systems having access to optimally fluoridated water, according to the “Burden of Oral Disease in Wisconsin – 2010” report from the Department of Health Services.