Community Water Fluoridation
Community water fluoridation is the most cost-effective way to deliver fluoride to people of all ages, education levels, and income levels who live in a community.
Recognized by the CDC as one of the great public health achievements of the 20th century, community water fluoridation is recommended by nearly all public health, medical, and dental organizations, including the American Dental Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, U.S. Public Health Service, and World Health Organization. For over 70 years, people in the U.S. have benefited from drinking water with fluoride, leading to better dental health.
Equal access to sufficient levels of community water fluoridation must be ensured. Currently, community water fluoridation—the adjustment of water fluoride that occurs naturally in water to protect oral health—reaches 66 percent of Americans, or 211 million people, on public water supplies; however, over 100 million Americans do not receive fluoridated water. The fluoridation of water at levels for optimal dental health is a proper means of protecting and furthering the public’s health.
Local health departments play a critical role in educating their communities and promoting effective strategies to improve and maintain oral health. Below are resources on community water fluoridation, including a Communications Toolkit, to help local health departments educate and inform their communities about the benefits of fluoridation.