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Florida town keeps fluoridation

Florida town keeps fluoridation
Dr. Hopwood

Dunedin, Fla.—In a 3-2 vote, Dunedin’s city commissioners opted Nov. 29 to continue fluoridating the municipality’s water supply.

The commissioners heard testimony for and against fluoridation, including pro-fluoridation remarks by several active and retired dentists from the Upper Pinellas County Dental Association, said Dr. S. Edward Hopwood, the UPCDA Fluoride Committee chair. The decision affects about 30,000 citizens.

“We’re really excited. It was really a good victory,” said Dr. Hopwood. “Although Pinellas County decided to end fluoridation at the end of this year, we’re starting to turn the tide after a lot of negative news and to see a lot of elected officials respond positively to our message.”

Dr. Hopwood, a general dentist in Clearwater, Fla., said the dental society is also taking some proactive steps to help Pinellas County citizens and health care professionals respond after county-wide fluoridation is halted Jan. 1. (Some 700,000 residents county-wide will be affected, but the cities of St. Petersburg, Gulfport, Dunedin and Belleair will continue to be fluoridated.)

“We are working on a website that will have information about fluoride for both health professionals and consumers,” he said. “We will offer information about the use of fluoride supplements and products so that everyone will understand their options once water is not fluoridated. This is a constructive response to the county commission’s action and something pediatricians have been asking about for awhile."

He anticipates the website will go live by the end of this year.

For more information from the ADA on fluoride and fluoridation, log on to www.ada.org/fluoride.aspx.