In 1995, the State of California passed legislation that requires water systems with 10,000 or more connections to fluoridate the water. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), over 84% of U.S. children, 96% of U.S. adults, and 99.5% of Americans 65 years of age and older have experienced tooth decay. Fluoride works by stopping or even reversing the tooth decay process.
North American water systems have added fluoride to their water supplies since 1945. Since that time, tooth decay has been reduced by 20% to 40% where fluoridation has been implemented. The CDC has proclaimed water fluoridation to be one of the top 10 greatest public health achievements of the past century. It is an effective, safe, and inexpensive way to prevent tooth decay and benefits Americans of all ages and socioeconomic status. Research indicates that frequent exposure to small amounts of fluoride is the best way to prevent tooth decay, and this is best gained by drinking fluoridated water and using a fluoride toothpaste twice daily.
The CDC currently recommends an optimal range of 0.7 to 1.2 mg/L (milligrams per litre) of fluoride to prevent tooth decay, which is lower than the federal and state goals. As shown in the latest Annual Water Quality Report (PDF), water service providers in CCWD's service area are well within that range. On January 7, 2011, the CDC released information referencing a report to update recommendations to target the lower end of the optimal range at 0.7 mg/L. CCWD will continue to monitor for updated recommendations and will make information available on this website.