Fluoride is actually the name of several chemical compounds that contain fluorine. When fluorine combines with another element, such as calcium or sodium, the compound created is called fluoride. Pure fluorine is not found in nature. This is because fluorine is one of the two most reactive elements in the world. Thus it combines with many different elements.
One of the most common natural fluorides is calcium fluoride. It is the least toxic. Even so, too much calcium fluoride produces changes to the teeth. The first stage displays bright white spots on the teeth. The second stage displays permanent brown stains and the third stage results in brittle, pitted brown stained teeth.
Sodium fluoride is more toxic. It was/is used for a century as a pesticide and rat poison until it was banned by the EPA in September 2005. It is the reason all fluoride toothpaste tubes carry warnings: “Keep out of the reach of children under 6 years of age. If more than used for brushing [a pea-sized amount] is accidentally swallowed, get medical help or call a Poison Control Center right away.” Sodium fluoride is slightly more toxic than stannous fluoride, which resulted in the death of 3-year old William Kennerly in Brooklyn, NY in 1974 as a result of swallowing and not spitting out a routine fluoride treatment
If sodium fluoride is not added to municipal water supplies, it has to be disposed of by taking it to a Class 1 Hazardous Waste landfill which would charge approximately $7000 for a truckload. It is used to fluoridate approximately 10% of municipal water supplies.
Hydrofluosilicic (hy-dro-flew-o-sill-is-ic) acid, which I call “chemical soup,” is more toxic yet. It is a waste product of the phosphate/fertilizer industry. It is known to contain lead and arsenic in small amounts. It is used to fluoridate the remaining 90% of municipal water systems.
The reason it is important to distinguish the different forms of fluoride is that there has never been any peer-reviewed, published scientific study demonstrating the safety and effectiveness of chemical soup.
However, there have been two studies showing the danger of the chemical soup based on historical data from approximately 400,000 children in Massachusetts, New York and several other states. Both of these studies, done by Professor Roger Masters of Dartmouth College, show that areas using the chemical soup to fluoridate have increased levels of lead in children’s blood resulting in increased learning disabilities, increased incidence of diagnosed hyperactivity, increased violent crime arrests and increased arrests for possession of drugs at the time of their arrest.
An independent, impartial study of fluoridation by a blue ribbon panel of scientists from Natick, Massachusetts examined both sides of the question and recommended quite firmly not to fluoridate.
They based their recommendations on many creditable studies showing increased tooth discoloration and malformation, increased hip fractures among the elderly, increased bone cancer among young males, reduced thyroid function, reduced kidney function, reduced IQ, increased chance of mongoloid birth, decreased fertility, and an increased cancer rate in general.