Minerals - Fuoride
Fluoride is most concentrated within
tissues such as cementum, bone, dentin, and enamel. Fluoride is the ionic form
of fluorine, and is instrumental in protecting bone and tooth enamel from loss
of constituent minerals.
Fluoridated water is the most abundant and important
source of fluoride for humans, and has been proven to aid in the reduced
incidence of dental caries.
Excessive fluoridation of teeth has resulted in a
condition called mottle enamel, which is characterized by discolored enamel.
Extremely high fluoride intake has been known to result in death.
Inconclusive evidence has linked fluoride to such
phenomena as enhanced iron absorption and increased wound-healing
Fluoride is proposed to enhance the
precipitation of hydroxyapatite crystals in solutions of calcium and phosphate
(e.g., blood) and therefore tends to prevent the demineralization of bone and
It has been further proposed that
fluoride becomes integrated within the hydroxyapatite crystals, creating
enlarge and less soluble crystals. Because these crystals are less soluble and
less reactive, dissolution of the tooth structure by acidic by-products of
microorganism metabolism cannot occur as readily. Bone is also less likely to
demineralize due to the decreased solubility of the fluoride containing
The action of fluoride on hydroxyapatite
crystals in bone and teeth make it a probable aid in the prevention of dental
caries and various bone demineralization disorders, such as osteoporosis,
osteomalacia, and periodontal disease.
Plasma fluoride levels stay relatively
constant, even in times of low fluoride consumption, due to the availability of
fluoride from bones. Fluoride absorption is very efficient and occurs primarily
in the stomach. Fluoride treatments for teeth are most effective if the
fluoride comes into direct contact with the teeth, as is the case with
fluoridated water and toothpaste.
Excretion occurs primarily through the
urine and sweat.
Fluoride intake throughout life has been
cited as beneficial in reducing the prevalence of senile osteoporosis. High
levels of fluoride intake have been used therapeutically in the treatment of
Water fluoride concentrations of one part
per million have resulted in a decrease in the incidence of dental caries of up
to 70%, as well as large decreases in the incidence of periodontal disease.
Although it has not been proven
conclusively, fluoride may increase the rate of wound healing and enhance iron
Fluoride deficiencies result in an
increased incidence of dental caries, increased incidence of osteoporosis, and
less stable bone and tooth structure overall.
Low fluoride consumption has been linked to a higher
incidence of calcification of the abdominal aorta artery.
Because fluoride inhibits the solubility of minerals,
such as calcium in the bone, low fluoride intake also results in a higher
incidence of bone resorption of the jaw, which is known as periodontal
Fluoride can be toxic, but only in amounts
far in excess of normal dietary consumption. One part per million fluoride (or
one milligram per liter of water) is added to fluoridated water supplies.
Concentrations of two to eight parts per million may result in mottle enamel,
or dental fluorosis. These disorders result in a discoloration of enamel.
Concentrations of 8 to 20 parts per million can result in osteosclerosis. At
concentration of 2,500 times the recommended daily allowance death can
Acute fluoride toxicity is very rare, with less than 500
cases recorded up to 1970. Mottled tooth enamel occurs in some areas with
excess fluoride added to water supplies, but the problem is only aesthetic in
nature. Prolonged excess fluoride exposure (more than 20 milligrams daily for
20 or more years) can lead to crippling skeletal fluorosis, but this is
Under experimental conditions, high levels of fluoride
have been associated with higher calcium retention and interference of collagen
formation, with possible inhibition of normal growth.
| RDA for adults
|| 1.5 - 4.0 mg
| RDA for
|| 1.5 - 4.0 mg
| RDA for age 1 3
|| 0.5 - 1.5 mg
| RDA for age 0 1
|| 0.1 - 1.0 mg
|| Fluoridated water
| Red Wine
|| White wine
|| Tea (black)