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December 10, 1982

Fluoride Supplements

Author Affiliations

Wayne State University School of Medicine Detroit

JAMA. 1982;248(22):2970. doi:10.1001/jama.1982.03330220016012

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To the Editor.—  Medical professionals have been working for years in an effort to further water fluoridation efforts in this country. Water fluoridation is by far the cheapest and most effective way to give lifetime protection against decayed, missing, and filled teeth and tooth loss. Currently, there is a serious problem at hand because the phosphate fertilizer industry is in financial distress and fluoride as a by-product of the inorganic fertilizer production is in short supply. In fact, several communities have already had to remove fluoride from their water supply.In the event that water fluoridation is discontinued in a local community, there is an effective alternative that is the responsibility of the physician. I refer to the use of fluoride supplements that are necessary during the first eight to ten years of life and will reduce the caries rates just as effectively as water fluoridation. We found in our