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Is there any proof that the amount of fluoride that commonly used in toothpaste is unhealthy?

  • Fluorine or Fluoride? – Dori Mar 15 '11 at 23:56
  • 2
    Everything that contains fluoride necessarily contain fluorine. – Christian Mar 16 '11 at 0:54
  • My point is that the two terms are being used interchangeably between the question and its answer(s), so standardization might benefit the question. Also, we have tags for fluoridation and fluorosis, and it seems to me that people searching for those would want to find this question as well. – Dori Mar 16 '11 at 1:10
  • You know you're not supposed to ingest toothpaste, right? – Django Reinhardt May 25 '13 at 3:42
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    @Christian Yes, sort of, but a distracting "clarification". The chemical form will be fluoride and that matters a lot. Same way that saying common table salt contains chlorine is really not helpful: it contains chloride. Chloride is essential for bodily function, chlorine not so much. – matt_black Jun 22 '15 at 16:41
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Fluoride Alert is an anti-fluoridation group and has no credibility in the scientific community.

The fluoride in toothpaste has a concentration of 1,000 to 1,500 ppm of fluoride (which is considerably higher than fluoridated water at 0.7 ppm). A small child would need to eat approximate two tubes of toothpaste in order to become seriously ill. However, the other ingredients would cause vomiting long before a dangerous amount was ingested. As for fluorosis, dentist recommend that very young children be given a pea-sized bit of toothpaste on their brush and instructed to spit out the toothpaste. This precaution is so that the child can avoid getting mild to very mild fluorosis, a purely cosmetic effect in which very tiny, snowflake-like spots develop on the surface of the teeth. It is actually an indication that the teeth are especially resistant to decay. The CDC website has photos of various stages of fluorosis. Moderate to serious fluorosis appears to occur more from drinking private well water with very high levels of fluoride.

Sources:

Institute for Science in Medicine: http://www.scienceinmedicine.org/policy/statements/fluoridation.pdf

For children under 2 years of age, refer to the CDC's advice:

http://www.cdc.gov/fluoridation/safety/dental_fluorosis.htm

  • 1
    Just a caveat that other home fluoride dental treatments may be fatally toxic to children: source – Oddthinking Dec 30 '12 at 3:59
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    "Fluoride Alert is an anti-fluoridation group and has no credibility in the scientific community." -- Citation required... and... is this relevant? Fluoride Alert is essentially a fluoride-centric news outlet (with an obvious bias). But news outlets not having "scientific credibility" really isn't news, or relevant. – Flimzy Jul 14 '18 at 16:35

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