Is fluoride safe if i’m pregnant or not?
During pregnancy, research suggests that “fluoride exposure from community water or from products, such as mouthwashes and toothpaste, are most likely safe for both you and your unborn child.”
Fluoride helps prevent dental caries (tooth decay) in the mother.The American Dental Association says that “fluoride is safe when you are pregnant as well as nursing and the fluoridated water benefits your whole mouth.”
On the other hand fluoride’s ability to damage the brain is one of the most active areas of fluoride research today! In the past three decades, over 100 studies have found that fluoride exposure can damage the brain.
“It is apparent that fluorides have the ability to interfere with the functions of the brain.” (National Research Council, 2006)
Some of the negative effects include: reduced intelligence, lower capacity to learn/remember, neurobehavioral deficits, impaired fetal brain development.
We know that the human placenta does not prevent the passage of fluoride from a pregnant mother’s bloodstream to the fetus. As a result, a fetus can be harmed by fluoride ingested pregnancy. Based on research from China, the fetal brain is one of the organs susceptible to fluoride poisoning.
Three Chinese studies have investigated fluoride’s effect on the fetal brain and each has found evidence of significant neurological damage, including neuronal degeneration and reduced levels of neurotransmitters such as norepinephrine. As noted by Yu (1996), “when norepinephrine levels drop the ability to maintain an appropriate state of activation in the central nervous system is weakened.”
In the 1960s, the FDA banned the use of prenatal fluoride supplements based on its concern about possible untoward effects on the fetus.
The safety of lower fluoride levels to fetal brain development has not yet been investigated, and remains to be determined.
In July of 2012, a team of Harvard researchers published a “meta-analysis” of 27 studies that have investigated the relationship between fluoride and human intelligence (Choi 2012). The overwhelming majority of these studies found that fluoride exposure was associated with reduced IQ in children.
Heavy exposure to fluoride during in utero development may result in skeletal fluorosis which becomes evident in childhood.(for topical use of fluoride).
A pregnant mother’s fluorine intake affects the amount of fluorine found in the primary teeth that develop in her fetus.
The research of Dr. Dean Burk, former Chief Chemist of the National Cancer Institute showed that 10,000 or more fluoridation-linked cancer deaths occur yearly in the United States.
In the 1990s, a British scientist, Jennifer Luke, discovered that fluoride accumulates to strikingly high levels in the pineal gland.
“Fluoride is likely to cause decreased melatonin production and to have other effects on normal pineal function, which in turn could contribute to a variety of effects in humans.” (National Research Council 2006).
Melatonin maintains the body’s circadian rhythm (sleep-wake cycle), regulates the onset of puberty in females, and helps protect the body from cell damage caused by free radicals.
In conclusion, we have to see the big picture and consider what other specialists and new research studies say.
The good news is that, if the mother decides not to use fluor during pregnancy she can take supplements like minerals which have a positive impact in bones and teeth health.
Sources: fluoridealert.org, drugs.com, sharecare.com, health-science.com