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Drinking Water Fluoridation#

Fort Collins Utilities adds fluoride to its drinking water, based on the recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (USPHS), the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), and the American Dental Association (ADA).

For more than half a century, the USPHS and CDPHE have recommended adding fluoride to drinking water to help prevent tooth decay. The CDC recognizes the widespread adoption of community fluoridation as one of the 10 greatest public health achievements of the 20th century.

According to the CDC website, "For 70 years, people in the United States have benefited from drinking water with fluoride, leading to better dental health. Drinking fluoridated water keeps the teeth strong and reduced tooth decay by approximately 25 percent in children and adults. By preventing tooth decay, community water fluoridation has been shown to save money, both for families and the health care system."

Read more: State of the Science: Community Water Fluoridation

Fluoridation has been part of Utilities' treatment process since the 1950s. In 2005, a ballot was presented to Fort Collins voters regarding the removal of fluoride from the drinking water. The ballot initiative was defeated, with voters choosing to continue the addition of fluoride.

In April 2015, the USPHS and the CDPHE lowered the recommended amount of fluoride added to drinking water from 1.0 to 0.7 ppm.

Fluoride occurs naturally in our source water in the 0.15 to 0.20 ppm range.

Currently, Fort Collins Utilities' drinking water fluoride levels are in the range of 0.60-0.75 ppm, with the fluoride system being monitored continuously. In addition, our ISO140001 certified Water Treatment Facility follows stringent safety procedures when working with fluoride as part of its Environmental Management System.

Please consult your physician if you are sensitive to fluoride or fluoridation-related substances, or provide City water to an infant younger than six months of age.

Health Benefitshighlight_off
  • Studies by the USPHS and others have established a cause-and-effect relationship between fluoridation and the prevention of tooth decay.
  • The American Academy of Family Physicians has issued the following policy statement: "Fluoridation of public water supplies is a safe, economical and effective measure to prevent dental caries" (tooth decay).
  • Since 1950, the ADA and USPHS, have endorsed the optimal fluoridation of community water supplies as a safe and effective public health measure for the prevention of dental decay.
  • The ADA's policy on fluoridation is based on its continuing evaluation of the scientific research on the safety and effectiveness of fluoride. It continues to reaffirm its position of support for water fluoridation and has strongly urged that fluoride benefits be extended to communities served by public water systems.
  • Today, fluoridation is the single most effective public health measure to prevent tooth decay and to improve oral health over a lifetime.
Additional Resourceshighlight_off

Per City Code Sec. 26-50, City Council is authorized by public vote to fluoridate the water supply system of the City to the levels established by the CDPHE.

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