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Surgeon General Endorses Community Water Fluoridation

2015 Marks 70 Years of Community Water Fluoridation in the United States

December 22, 2015

Contact Information:
Robert Raible

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The American Dental Association (ADA) applauds U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, M.D., and his endorsement today of community water fluoridation. “Fluoride’s effectiveness in preventing tooth decay extends throughout one’s life,” he said, “resulting in fewer – and less severe – cavities.”

This year marks the 70th anniversary of community water fluoridation. Since its introduction in Grand Rapids, Michigan in 1945, optimally fluoridated water has dramatically improved the oral health of tens of millions of Americans.

“Studies show that community water fluoridation prevents at least 25 percent of tooth decay in children and adults, even in an era with widespread availability of fluoride from other sources, such as fluoride toothpaste,” said ADA President Dr. Carol Gomez Summerhays. “On behalf of the ADA, we wish to thank Dr. Murthy for reaffirming that community water fluoridation is the single most effective public health measure to prevent tooth decay. The ADA is proud to continue its efforts at the state and federal levels to support this safe and proven way to help fight dental disease.”

Community water fluoridation education is one of the initiatives supported by the ADA’s Action for Dental Health movement. For more information on fluoride and its health benefits, visit ada.org/fluoride. For more information on Action for Dental Health, visit ada.org/action.

About the ADA

The not-for-profit ADA is the nation's largest dental association, representing 159,000 dentist members. The premier source of oral health information, the ADA has advocated for the public's health and promoted the art and science of dentistry since 1859. The ADA's state-of-the-art research facilities develop and test dental products and materials that have advanced the practice of dentistry and made the patient experience more positive. The ADA Seal of Acceptance long has been a valuable and respected guide to consumer dental care products. The monthly The Journal of the American Dental Association (JADA) is the ADA's flagship publication and the best-read scientific journal in dentistry. For more information about the ADA, visit ADA.org. For more information on oral health, including prevention, care and treatment of dental disease, visit the ADA's consumer website MouthHealthy.org