Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Fluoridated Water the Best Option says Ministry of

Fluoridated Water the Best Option says Ministry of Health

The overwhelming evidence on putting fluoride into water supplies shows its safe, and very effective in preventing tooth decay, Dr Colin Tukuitonga from the Ministry Of Health said today.

His comments follow ongoing efforts to maintain and encourage the fluoridation of water supplies in New Zealand - the latest in Northland where an opinion poll is being held to decide if it should be introduced.

"There is no question that fluoridated water is the most efficient way for communities to reduce and prevent tooth decay. While tooth decay rates have fallen in every region in New Zealand, surveillance has shown that the communities that add fluoride to their water supply see the greatest reductions," said Dr Tukuitonga, Director of Public Health.

He noted that councils have to think about public health considerations when making decisions about water fluoridation. Section 23 of the Health Act ,and section 595 of the Local Government Act state that territorial authorities have responsibilities to provide for the health and well being of the public.

"The World Health Organisation recommends water fluoridation as the best way to improve oral health, major international studies highlight the benefits, and the extensive and ongoing research shows there are no significant adverse health effects from fluoridation."

Dr Tukuitonga highlighted a recent study by the Medical Research Council in the United Kingdom as one of many studies reassuring people about the safety of adding fluoride to the water supply, especially at the levels used in New Zealand of between 0.7 to 1 mg/litre, which are recommended in the New Zealand Drinking Water Standards 2000.

"The benefits of fluoridating water at this level are seen especially in children and those in lower socioeconomic groups. But the community as a whole wins - for example, a report on Preventive Dental Strategies for Older Populations noted that fluoride is the most important preventive measure available against decay for this group."

While praising fluoridation as the best public health measure to prevent tooth decay, Dr Tukuitonga said he couldn't stress enough the need for a healthy diet, and to brush teeth with toothpaste several times a day in order to maintain healthy teeth.

"Getting fluoride from other sources such as toothpaste is important to prevent tooth decay. And of course, a balanced diet that's low in sugar benefits more than just your oral health," he said.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Also, Loan Interest: Productivity Commission On Tertiary Education

Key recommendations include better quality control; making it easier for students to transfer between courses; abolishing University Entrance; enabling tertiary institutions to own and control their assets; making it easier for new providers to enter the system; and facilitating more and faster innovation by tertiary education providers... More>>


Higher Payments: Wellington Regional Council Becomes A Living Wage Employer

Councillor Sue Kedgley said she was delighted that the Wellington Regional Council unanimously adopted her motion to become a Living Wage employer, making it the first regional council in New Zealand to do so. More>>


Scoop Images:
Dame Patsy Reddy Sworn In As Governor-General

This morning Dame Patsy Reddy was sworn in as the New Zealand Realm’s 21st Governor-General. The ceremony began with a pōwhiri to welcome Dame Patsy and her husband Sir David Gascoigne to Parliament. More>>


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news