It is the position of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to support optimal systemic and topical fluoride as an important public health measure to promote oral health and overall health throughout life. Fluoride is an important element in the mineralization of bone and teeth. The proper use of topical and systemic fluoride has resulted in major reductions in dental caries and its associated disability. Dental caries remains the most prevalent chronic disease in children and affects all age groups of the population. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has named fluoridation of water as one of the 10 most important public health measures of the 21st century. Currently, >72% of the US population that is served by community water systems benefits from water fluoridation. However, only 27 states provide fluoridated water to more than three quarters of the state's residents on public water systems. Fluoride also plays a role in bone health. However, at this time, use of high doses of fluoride for osteoporosis prevention is considered experimental only. Dietetics practitioners should routinely monitor and promote the use of fluorides for all age groups.
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