To the editor:
I have been a Pine Island homeowner since 1999 and a consumer of Pine Island's relatively pristine tap water. I am totally against our Water Board's decision to add fluoride to our water supply. This agency has no right to medicate me or anyone else without our express permission-which they didn't bother to ask for through proper notification. Adding fluoride to my water is doing exactly that-medicating me and all the other Pine Island citizens without our permission. It is unethical at the least and medially damaging to many at the extreme.
I have thyroid disease and have needed to use medical supplementation for years to replace the hormone not produced by my body. As part of dealing with this condition, it is important to avoid certain chemicals, like fluoride, that affect the thyroid function. I have eliminated contact with fluoride in everything I consume such as drinking water, certain teas, toothpaste, dental treatments, bottled waters and other bottled drinks. One of the reasons I moved to Pine Island was the non-fluoridated water. It's the first question I asked my realtor-what is added to the water.
Numerous municipalities and dentists are deciding to discontinue fluoridation because it has been proven unnecessary and, to many like me, dangerous. Anyone with kidney disease, dementia, Alzheimer's, osteoporosis and other medical conditions should consider that fluoride ingestion could cause severe and/or deadly problems for them.
Most of Europe has largely decided against fluoridation because scientific studies have shown that it provided no added benefit to prevent tooth decay and, in fact, may actually cause tooth decay and pitting in the developing teeth of infants and very young children-a condition known as fluorosis. It can also cause skeletal fluorosis in elderly bones.
If there is a benefit of fluoride to prevent tooth decay, it is not through a mass, systemic treatment through our wonderful drinking water supply. It is through direct application by using fluoridated toothpaste or by professional dental application directly to the tooth enamel. The best prevention is through proper diet and dental hygiene. Pine Island has many more retirees than most areas in relationship to young children. Plus, the medical grade fluoride used by dentists is way safer and more effective than the cheaper toxic industrial waste by-product that constitutes the fluoride that will be dumped in our water. Why make everyone on this beautiful island ingest fluoride for the supposed benefit of a few.
There exists a large body of data from the Fluoride Action Network. I had hoped that the board would study this information filled with actual scientists' findings on fluoride. Either they didn't do their research, didn't care, discredited it, or there are other less obvious reasons for this choice. Big corporations with a vested interest in selling their toxic waste products, like this fluoride, can be very persuasive. Providing funding for state and local grants is like handing out penny candy-a drop in their bucket. None of us appreciates being pushed around by our BIG federal and state governments. Well, we shouldn't tolerate it on a small local level either. Especially where our ealth is concerned. We only have one body. We should be able to choose what we put into it. Please stand up for your rights and voice your opposition to your Water Board representative.
St. James City