Why Dentists continue to highly encourage flouride treatment.

Calgary Removed Fluoride from Water and Saw an Increase in Tooth Decay

  • Dan Arel – Award-winning journalist and bestselling author
Dentist in Jupiter Florida

Dentists in Jupiter Recommends Fluoride Treatment

When Calgary, Alberta decided to remove fluoride from its drinking water in 2011, the rate of tooth decay in Calgary children increased found a new study. The research, published in the journal Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, compared rates of tooth decay among second-grade students in Calgary and Edmonton, a city 300 km north of Calgary that still adds fluoride to its drinking water.

The decision by cities around North America to remove fluoride from drinking water has been rather controversial. Medical research, to date, has found no harmful effects of adding fluoride to public water supplies and have long argued the benefits of doing so. Yet, opponents of the practice have continued to argue against medical science and claim that fluoride can actually lower a child’s IQ level; a claim that has long since been debunked.

“We designed the study so we could be as sure as possible that [the increased tooth decay] was due to [fluoride] cessation rather than due to other factors,” said Lindsay McLaren, a researcher at the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine who led the study. “We systematically considered a number of other factors and in the end, everything pointed to fluoridation cessation being the most important factor.”

McLaren said the cause and effect are clear because of the way they designed the study.

In 2011, Calgary’s city council voted 10-3 to remove fluoride after citing insufficient medical evidence that it was necessary or offered any benefit.

“We as a council have to show some leadership here,” Ward 3 Coun. Jim Stevenson said in 2011, after the decision to remove the fluoride. “I would really question our right to put [fluoride] in, but I don’t question at all our right to remove it.”

Dentists, however, did not agree with the decision and continued to argue for fluoridated water as an ideal and cost effective method for fighting tooth decay, especially for those who cannot afford to visit a dentist regularly.

“It’s not unusual for us to see a child with almost full-mouth decay in the population that we’re looking at, and considering that we’re in Calgary, we shouldn’t be seeing that degree of disease here and we are,” said Denise Kokaram, of the Alex Dental Health Bus. She finds the results troubling because she believes that it could have been fully prevented if not for the ill-informed actions of the city council. “And to think of that rising, and those children suffering and in even more pain, when it’s such an easy thing to remedy to remedy or, at least, assist with,” said added.

Alex Dental saw 1,700 children in Calgary last year, and Kokaram said nearly 50 percent of them suffered from tooth decay.

American cities such as Portland, Oregon have also made the decision not to add fluoride to their water supply after citing health risks, most of which are perpetrated by conspiracy theorists, and not backed by medical research. With new data coming out of Canada, one must wonder if cities in the United States and others around Canada will take note and rethink making rash decisions based on bad information. Multiple studies in the past have shown an increase in dental health was needed in lower income populations in the U.S. and coupled with the findings in Calgary, it should be clear that one solution is fluoridating the water supply.

No study as has been released looking at cities such as Portland and compared it to cities that do add fluoride to the water, but it seems the time for such a study is now. The Calgary study looked at 600 children between 2004 and 2005 before the fluoride was removed from the water supply, and then researchers looked at data from nearly 3,500 children in both cities from 2013 and 2014, after the removal. Researchers saw a significant increase in tooth decay in children whose permanent teeth had begun coming in, a finding they did not believe they would find given the short time between the removal of fluoride and the study. Researchers had set out to gather information on children primary teeth and were surprised by the significant rise in permanent, making their finds more alarming in their opinion. The benefits of doing similar studies in other parts of North America would be greatly beneficial.

The Calgary study will certainly help arm supporters of fluoridation and gives solid medical evidence that the addition of fluoride to drinking water is a positive step for public health, especially in low-income communities when visiting dentists is far rarer as it’s an unaffordable task.

Dr. Krape has always encouraged his patients to regularly use Fluoride in the prevention of tooth decay. The science and medical benefits are un-refutable. When it comes to finding a dentist that will keep you smiling BIG! Choose Dr. Krape Cosmetic and Gentle Family Dentistry!

Call: 561-257-2580 Today!

“Only Floss the Teeth You Want to Keep”! says Dr. Krape Cosmetic Dentistry, Jupiter, Florida

One of Doctor Jerry Krapes’ words of wisdom for his patients for over 40 year still rings true today. Flossing your teeth regularly is not always one of the easiest disciplines to remember, but if you can develop this as part of your daily routine it can becomes a perfunctory habit that will save you much grief, pain and expense in the future.

Like any good habit, it must start with a daily time you choose, whether you leave a note on your mirror, or a reminder alert on your phone, once you start, it only becomes easier in time.

Dr. Krape - Cosmetic Dentist

Dr. Krape Cosmetic Dentistry

Below are 7 excuses we use, and ways to overcome them.

Flossing your teeth is more important to your well-being than even brushing. So why do so many of us find reasons not to do it?

We’ve got excuses, but dentists have simple answers for them all.

Excuse No. 1: Food Never Gets Stuck In My Teeth

The main purpose of flossing isn’t to remove food from the teeth. It’s to get rid of plaque. Busting out the floss every day prevents gum disease and tooth loss. Everybody gets plaque, and it can only be removed by flossing or a deep cleaning from your dentist.

Excuse No. 2: I Don’t Know How to Floss

It’s “the most difficult personal grooming activity there is,” says Samuel B. Low, DDS, past president of the American Association of Periodontology. But it’s one of the most important to learn.

Use these tips to floss correctly:

  • Use 18 inches of floss. Wrap most of it around the middle finger of one hand, the rest around your other middle finger.
  • Grasp the string tightly between your thumb and forefinger, and use a rubbing motion to guide it between teeth.
  • When the floss reaches the gum line, form a C to follow the shape of the tooth.
  • Hold the strand firmly against the tooth, and move it gently up and down.
  • Repeat with the other tooth, and then repeat the entire process with the rest of your teeth.
  • Use fresh sections of floss as you go.

Don’t forget the back of your last molars. “By far, most gum disease and most decay occurs in the back teeth,” Low says.

Excuse No. 3: I’m Not Coordinated Enough to Floss

If you have trouble reaching the back of your mouth, ask your dentist about:

  • Plastic, disposable, Y-shaped flossers that allow for extra reach
  • Small, round brushes
  • Pointed, rubber tips
  • Wooden or plastic pics (called interdental cleaners)

A child will need your help to floss until he’s about 11 years old. Kids should start to floss as soon as they have two teeth that touch.

Excuse No. 4: I Don’t Have Time

Find a time of day that works for you. You should floss at least once a day. Two times is best.

Make it a part of your routine, morning and night. If you find you forget, store your floss with your toothbrush and toothpaste to remind yourself.

You don’t have to do it in front of your bathroom mirror. Keep some floss in your car to use while you’re in traffic. Stash some in your desk and use it after lunch. The key is to fit in flossing when it works for you.

Excuse No. 5: It Hurts

If your gums bleed or hurt, you may have gingivitis or gum disease. That’s an even bigger reason to floss.

“Flossing should not be a painful experience, but stopping flossing because of bleeding [or pain] is just the opposite of what you should be doing,” says Mark S. Wolff, DDS, PhD, chairman of cariology and comprehensive care at the NYU College of Dentistry.

If you brush and floss daily, the bleeding and pain should stop in less than 2 weeks. If it doesn’t, see your dentist.

Excuse No. 6: I’m Pregnant

It may be hard to floss if you’re tired or nauseated. But it’s important to keep up with your brushing and flossing routine. Pregnancy can cause a wide range of dental issues, from gum disease to enamel wear.

Excuse No. 7: My Teeth Are Too Close Together

Try waxed or glide floss for an easier fit. If you have recessed gums, varied gaps between teeth, or braces, you can also try a threader or loop to find an easier entry point. If your floss shreds, you may have a cavity or a problem with dental work, like a broken crown or loose filling. Ask your dentist to take a look.