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PRESS RELEASE 31/07/2002


Yesterday, the Belgium Health Ministry confirmed it was banning fluoride tablets and fluoride chewing gum.(1) This fluoride ban comes after a new health study "found excessive use of fluoride products increased the risk not only of osteoporosis, but of damage to the nervous system too". Osteoporosis causes weakening of bones and can lead to fractures.

Belgium does not have water fluoridation but in Ireland 75% of the populationís water supply is dosed with chemical fluoride, in addition to these fluoride products. It is therefore no surprise that Ireland has one of the highest osteoporosis rates in Europe. Unfortunately, our Minister of Health is not interested in the effects of increasing fluoride consumption, instead Minister Martin is hiding behind a biased, shambolic Forum which is now 11 months overdue.

It is also interesting that the Belgian health ministry commissioned this health study into the effects of fluoride when our Minister of Health has consistently failed to do so. This refusal contravenes the current legislation, which requires the minister to study the health effects of fluoridation. In forty years of water fluoridation in Ireland, there has never been a health study.

Dr. Don Mac Auley, spokesperson for Irish Dentists Opposing Fluoridation, commented, "we should all be concerned by this new research, as we have so much fluoride in our water, our fluoride levels will be higher than the Belgians. Osteoporosis is on the increase in Ireland and with more studies showing fluoride health damage, we need to follow the precautionary principle and stop water fluoridation immediately. Minister Martin must commence health studies or reconsider his position as Minister of Health. As a group of health care professionals, we have a duty to protect public health and therefore we are demanding that Minister Martin fulfil the legislation or resign".

For further information contact: Dr. Don Mac Auley 046 21203

1. BBC News. 30/7/2002

2. Health (Fluoridation of Water Supplies) Act 1960 section 6.

3.Dr. Gerard Gavin, Chief Dental Officer, Dept. of Health, presentation to the Dail Committee on Health and Children. 20/7/2000. Transcript of proceedings

Irish Dentists Opposing Fluoridation