Steven D. Slott, DDS, is ‘Information Director’ (LOL!) for the American Fluoridation Society, a notorious pro-fluoridation extremist group. His latest attempt to discredit anti-fluoridation arguments and concerns – via a letter in the Portland Press Herald – parrots the usual garbage. Let’s have a closer look at Slott’s letter:
Slott: “This is a health care issue, not one of water treatment.”
Well Mr. Slott, if that is so, then apply the principle of informed consent to treatment. You can’t ethically force people to be exposed to a treatment who may not want that treatment. Surely they taught you this in dental school? Slott is correct, however, that fluoridation is not a water treatment measure – it is most definitely a systemic human treatment and is not put in place to treat water in the normal sense.
“Fluoride is the only chemical added to water for the purpose of medical treatment. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies fluoride as a drug when used to prevent or mitigate disease (FDA 2000). As a matter of basic logic, adding fluoride to water for the sole purpose of preventing tooth decay (a non-waterborne disease) is a form of medical treatment. All other water treatment chemicals are added to improve the water’s quality or safety, which fluoride does not do” (1).
Slott: “The “mounting body of evidence” of adverse effects is a common argument of fluoridation opponents. It has no support in credible, peer-reviewed science. When challenged to produce such evidence, opponents invariably cannot do so.”
Slott: “Optimal-level fluoride is no more neurotoxic than are any of these substances at proper use levels.”
Mr. Slott talks about “proper use levels,” which is absurd when one considers that once fluoridation chemicals are added to drinking water, they are consumed at uncontrolled and unmonitored levels (see: concentration vs. dose) and also contaminate an extensive variety of products (4) (5). Furthermore, the NRC has recommend that, “analysis of fluoride in blood and urine samples” be conducted to make up for the current lack of population-wide biomonitoring.
So for Mr. Slott to spout garbage phrases like “proper use levels,” is highly irresponsible and dishonest, especially given that, “we know that fluoride interferes with many other biochemical molecules and processes in addition to interfering with enzymes” (6), and “in the last decade, interest in its undesirable effects has resurfaced due to the awareness that this element interacts with cellular systems even at low doses” (7). A margin of safety therefore cannot be established with certainty.
Slott: “As stated by Dr. John Doull, toxicologist and chair of the 2006 National Research Council Committee on Fluoride in Drinking Water: “I do not believe there is any valid scientific reason for fearing adverse health conditions from the consumption of water fluoridated at the optimal level.”
It is interesting that Mr. Slott fails to mention another quote from Dr. John Doull, which paints a different picture:
“What the committee found is that we’ve gone with the status quo regarding fluoride for many years—for too long, really—and now we need to take a fresh look. In the scientific community, people tend to think this is settled. I mean, when the U.S. surgeon general comes out and says this is one of the 10 greatest achievements of the 20th century, that’s a hard hurdle to get over. But when we looked at the studies that have been done, we found that many of these questions are unsettled and we have much less information than we should, considering how long this [fluoridation] has been going on. I think that’s why fluoridation is still being challenged so many years after it began. In the face of ignorance, controversy is rampant” (8).
In summary: Nice try, Slott. But we are onto you, mate.