Arvada to halt water fluoridation due to hazardous leak | News

Arvada will temporarily stop adding fluoride to its water due to a leak in a tank at the Ralston water treatment plant.

“The city has notified dentists in Arvada and urged residents to consult their dentist about ways to maintain dental health,” the city website said.

Arvada used a liquid fluoride system, but the leaky tank is dangerous and it is not possible to simply replace it. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) is working with the city to move quickly to a power system.

The Denver Post reports that fluoridation will resume in mid-2020.

City voters approved the 1967 fluoridation program. Although some Colorado communities have enough naturally occurring fluoride in their water supplies to prevent tooth decay, adding small amounts of fluoride is a well-established way to reduce cavities by about 25%.

In a 2018 report that found that 15% of third graders in Colorado had untreated tooth decay, CDPHE recommended fluoridation of water in the community as a possible policy solution. Fewer Coloradans have access to fluorinated water than in the past. While 81.7% of the population lived in communities with fluoridation in 1992, that number fell to 74% in 2014.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention named water fluoridation one of the top 10 public health achievements of the 20th century, along with vehicle safety and the recognition of tobacco as a health hazard.

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