Last summer, I read about calcium fluoride (natural) and sodium fluoride (synthetic compound) that is added to water. Sodium fluoride is not a vitamin; it’s a chemical added to water to treat people.

I wanted to see for myself what the controversy was about.

After touring the Bethel Water District and seeing the bags of the products clearly labeled “made in China” and “Poison Toxic by Ingestion,” I started to do some research.

I called the company in China that produces the product. China banned water fluoridation in 1983, due to potential health risks. Nearly half of Maine has rejected or ceased the practice since it was implemented. I found lists of all countries that have followed the worldwide trend to ban the practice.

According to the information I found, only children with budding teeth should be prescribed fluoride supplements. Prescriptions for that age group are cheap and there are many free programs. Adults ingesting fluoride via the water supply receive no benefit.

The Center for Disease Control currently states that more than 40 percent of adolescents between the ages of 12 and 15 suffer from dental fluorosis.

I have read studies by Harvard Medical School and scholarly peer-reviewed journals. People should research the issue for themselves.

The bottom line is that there are risks with ingestion and people should decide for themselves if they want their families to take those risks.

There will be a vote on the issue on June 9.

Sarah Lane, Bethel

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