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Florida city brings fluoridation back

April 20, 2016

By Michelle Manchir

Lake City, Fla. — This municipality will reinstate community water fluoridation following a unanimous city council vote.

Lake City had been fluoridated for more than two decades until 2007, when a new water treatment plant was built, according to the Florida Dental Association. The city council voted 5-0 to restart fluoridation at its March 21 meeting after hearing from local dentists, Florida Dental Association representatives, and state and county health workers.

Thanks to a county health administrator who initiated contact with the Florida Dental Association, Dr. Lorrie Wheeler, a dentist in Lake City, helped organize the local effort for public education about fluoridation.

"The huge benefits of community water fluoridation were laid out" for city council members, said Dr. Wheeler. "Approximately 30 additional community members and dental professionals were on hand to support this recommendation.  I was somewhat discouraged by the questions raised about the safety issues at the facility to the disregard of the benefits the fluoridation could provide. I was optimistic that all queries could be answered based on the fantastic work of state and national advocates for water fluoridation."

The action will benefit more than 17,000 community water system users, said Dr. Johnny Johnson, who advocated for measure on behalf of the Florida Dental Association.

For more information, resources and testimonials about community water fluoridation, visit ADA.org/fluoride.