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Community Dent Oral Epidemiol. 2000 Oct;28(5):321-9.

Decision-making for national programs of community fluoride use.


Every community, region or country with a high or rising prevalence of dental caries should implement a caries-preventive program that automatically brings the benefits of systemic and topically applied fluoride to the entire population. The fluoridation of community water supplies or salt fulfills the requirements of providing safe, effective protection from dental caries at reasonable cost. The use of dietary fluoride supplements or fluoridated milk does not meet the requirements of a comprehensive national or community program because compliance is poor or only selected age groups are targeted. Water fluoridation is ideal for countries, regions or communities with many central water supplies or where salt production or distribution is not centralized or easy to control. Water fluoridation also has advantages where many areas exist with natural water fluoride concentrations at optimal or greater than optimal concentrations. Salt fluoridation is ideal for countries or regions with few, potable central water supplies in which salt production and distribution are centralized and easily controlled. Concentrations of fluoride for water fluoridation range from 0.5 to 1.2 parts per million (ppm) parts of water depending on climate and dietary practices. The concentration for fluoridation of salt is approximately 200 to 250 mg fluoride per kg of salt, also depending on dietary practices. Properly fluoridated salt should produce levels of urinary fluoride excretion similar to those found in communities with fluoridated water. Benefits of the two methods are similar. Salt fluoridation may be done more cheaply.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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