by Dr. Don Mac Auley.

Irish Sunday MirrorĖ Opinion


They claim fluoride makes teeth stronger.. Now even dentists say itís poisonous!

Our bodies contain 76% water and we all need it to survive - but when we turn on our taps are we aware of the growing controversy surrounding what comes out?

For the last forty years, fluoride has been added to our drinking water to "benefit" our teeth and help stop decay.

Since the early 1960s, tooth decay has fallen in Ireland and our teeth are much healthier now than in the previous generation.

However, 98% of Europe has stopped, banned or never tried water fluoridation. These countries have less decay than we do, so our decay levels are more likely due to improved diet and better hygiene and teeth brushing than the addition of fluoride.

The idea that fluoride in our water can somehow harden our teeth against decay but leave the rest of our bodies untouched is now seriously in question.

How swallowed fluoride finds its way back to our teeth and avoids the rest of our organs is a mystery.

Fluoride has been described as "more toxic than lead and slightly less toxic than arsenic" and is considered an accumulative toxin.

Recently, doctors and dentists in Ireland have highlighted the many international studies linking fluoridation to damaging health conditions such as hip fractures, osteoporosis, cancer, irritable bowel syndrome and thyroid damage.

If it can harden teeth then can it harden bones and contribute to osteoporosis? The problem is no-one knows because successive ministers have failed to carry out the health studies required by law.

Fluoride also causes tooth damage (dental fluorosis). There has been an increase in fluorosis in Ireland and it now affects 40-50% of all children and teenagers.

The damage is seen as white lines or spots on the teeth in mild cases. In more severe cases it causes brown staining, chipping and pitting of teeth.

This fluoride tooth damage is permanent and it is very costly to treat the more severe cases.

A medicine is defined as a substance that can treat or prevent disease. The practice of medicating drinking water with fluoride to prevent tooth decay has always been controversial. Surprisingly, the Irish Medicines Board recently declared that this fluoride agent is not a medicine and has never been proven safe or effective for use on humans.

So what is it?

Through the Freedom of Information Act, we discovered another shocking fact about Irish fluoridation. The fluoride agent is a fertliser waste product imported by Albatros Fertilizers Ltd., Co. Wexford.

It is imported from a fertiliser factory in Holland where fluoridation is banned by law.

The most recent analysis of this agent from the Eastern Regional Health Authority shows it contains arsenic, mercury, lead and chromium.

These are all cancer-causing heavy metals. Not only are we getting fluoride but we also getting a range of toxic metals in a product that is untested and uncontrolled.

Irelandís water treatment plants dump 2000 gallons of this toxic cocktail into our drinking water supplies every day.

In the 21st Century, the lack of choice or consent with this compulsory medication is becoming a huge issue.

Nearly 75% of the Irish population receives drinking water dosed with fluoride. To date, nine county councils, two city corporations and seven urban district councils have all called for an end to the practice.

The Consumersí Association of Ireland also added its voice to the tide of protest.

However, they are as powerless as you and I to stop this mass medication.

The only person who can turn off the fluoride taps is the Minister of Health.

Unfortunately, instead of doing the health studies, Minister Martin set up a rubber-stamping exercise called the Forum on Fluoridation.

This forum includes professionals and experts some of whom have promoted and built their careers on fluoride/fluoridation.

This mainly pro-fluoride forum held their meetings in secret. Our organisation thinks their proceedings were never independent, open or objective.

Individuals and organisations stayed away and refused invitations to this closed, pro-fluoride body.

One GP, who did attend, was so shocked by the forumís lack of openness that he is now taking legal action.

On 26/10/2001, Dr. Andrew Rynne, a Co Kildare family doctor, issued High Court proceedings against the Minister for Health, Eastern Regional Health Authority, Kildare Co Council, the Attorney General and the state.

An increasing number of professionals including dentists are calling for an immediate end to fluoridation.

Dentists, in the past, have been silent on this issue but now through Irish Dentists Opposing Fluoridation (www.idof.net) we intend to be vocal in calling for an end to a practice which is unsafe, undemocratic and unscientific.