With the passage of time, there are new steps by the government for better public health. For instance, one of the fairly recent decisions was providing fluoridated water to households. This means even the normal tap water will have fluoride in it.
Many of the health professionals agree on it being a good initiative. However, others disagree by stating some of the fluoride’s potential dangers. According to research, fluoride is one of the primary ingredients in toothpaste. This is because of its amazing benefits for dental health.
In fact, this decision of fluoridated water was for promoting dental health. While this may benefit oral health, it can be dangerous for other functions in the body. Statistically, around sixty-six million people in the United States received fluoridated water.
The Centre for Disease Control and Prevention states that this did result in better oral health. In contrast, many new studies highlight some of its negative impacts. For instance, research highlights that fluoride can affect maternal health and may be passed down the placenta.
In a similar way, a new study further explores the effects of fluoride during pregnancy. More specifically, researchers from York University in Canada saw whether fluoride affect intelligence in offsprings. The leading author of the study was Rivka Green. Its findings appear in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.
What Was the Research Method?
Maintaining public health in today’s world is a bigger challenge than ever before. This is why governments have to think a decision over many times before passing it. Additionally, there is always a chance of having negative outcomes of a step.
In this case, the main focus is on the effects of fluoridated water. Since the majority of the households in the US receive such water, it was fundamental to study its effects. In addition, the author explains that previous research shows a link between water and low IQ scores in children.
The new study goes further was observes the effects during the brain development period on the fetus. To do so, the researchers made two groups of pregnant women and their children. The total number of participants was 601. Around forty-one percent of these, who were in the second group, had fluoridated tap water.
To know fluoride exposure, the researchers took the self-reports by the mother. They also used data from tests such as maternal urinary fluoride (MUF) concentration. On the other hand, they also had data from at least 400 of the 600 participants on the intelligence scores of their children.
What Did the Research Find?
After analyzing all sources, it was found that fluoride affects intelligence in boys. There was a 4.5 reduction in IQ levels of boys with a 1-milligram/liter increase in MU. In the case of girls, the results were completely different. The researchers are not sure about the reason for this.
According to the conclusion of the study, women may have to control their fluoride exposure during pregnancy. However, there were some limitations to this research as well. So, further research may confirm their findings with more data and a bigger number of participants.