Fluoride levels in U.S. drinking water should be lowered, U.S. health officials said Friday.
The federal government announced Friday morning that fluoride, the substance credited with dramatically lowering cavity rates when added to water supplies, is causing tooth streaks and spots in 2 out of 5 adolescents.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agencies are proposing to reduce the amount of fluoride in drinking water to a maximum of 0.7 milligrams per liter (mg/L), down from the previous limit of 1.2 mg/L, NPR reported Friday.
HHS says that most U.S. cases of the tooth-spotting condition, called dental fluorosis, has only a mild cosmetic effect and generally goes unnoticed by everyone besides dentists. But the agency says kids today are getting too much fluoride from drinking water, toothpaste and mouthwash, so the levels in the water supply will be scaled back.