I know there are a lot of fluoride haters out there, and there are claims that fluoride causes thyroid issues. I tried to do an internet search for respected, peer-reviewed studies on the matter, but all I find are articles from sites like "Stop the Thyroid Madness" or "Fluoride Alert" or other conspiracy theory/scare tactic sites.
Is there substantiated evidence that the amount of fluoride in drinking water, or the amounts used in toothpaste, fluoride rinses, and dental treatments (which aren't consumed but spit out) actually causes thyroid damage in humans? I'm not talking about rats that were fed enormous amounts of fluoride; I don't consider the amount the average American consumes to be enormous.
Not wanting to start a debate; just looking for actual facts.
I've never heard of fluoride causing (or contributing to) thyroid disease. I work in the water treatment industry and while there are EPA limits on the amount of fluoride in water, it would take excessive amounts to cause problems, then I don't know if it would, specifically, damage the thyroid.
I can't see that dental treatments that are not consumed (toothpaste, rinses, etc) would cause an issue, but that's an interesting question. I'll try to find more information on the subject.
Actually, I did a quick search and here's an interesting article about fluoride and the effect on bones........ nothing about thyroid....... I'll keep looking, as I have time.
If you have a familial history of thyroid disease, your autoimmune thyroid disease is due to genetics,not flouride.
I can understand the iodine effect, but never wrapped my brain around why some say flouride causes thyroid problems. If that were the case, the estimated 20% of ppl with the thyroid problems would be around 50%. IMHOP
I have worked with flouride and flourine in evaporative vacuum chambers. And it is advised to handle under a draft hood or with a mask on in its pure form. Its lethal at 5-10 grams of ingestion.
Does that mean that its risky in tooth paste and water? Theses are very low amounts. The prolonged effects are hard to study, if even possible. Just like the food we consume in plastic containers. But why is thyroid disease higher in developed countries? Maybe all these pollutants and chemicals in modern living add up to something that thyroid and the immune system doesn't like.
I dont know, just saying I've read that several times that it is higher. Just like Diabetes is also said to be higher in developed countries (primarily the West). But then again, how were these facts found like you are asking? It's not like third world people get thyroid panels performed yearly.
About the USA- Enlarged goiters (not too common today) did have a higher occurrence in the Midwest in the early part of the last century, found from US medical records. The belief was from a lack of iodine in the farming soil, thanks to the glaciers. I'm sure you heard that one, maybe others have not.
Thanks, everyone. I do have some thyroid issues (numbers going up and down) but haven't been diagnosed yet (I see an Endo at the end of June). I don't have any family history of thyroid problems. I was just curious, because I know there is an anti-fluoridated-water faction out there, and thyroid issues is one of their claims about fluoride in drinking water. However, I have no plans to stop drinking my water unless there is some hard science from sources other than fringe groups that show a definite causation link between fluoridated water and thyroid problems. From the responses, it sounds like there is no such link. Thanks again!
I take thyroid meds for hypothyroidism. My problems started after an accessed tonsil in 2002 and the thyroid problem was not diagnosed until 3.5 years later. By that time I was pretty bad off. I was taking 125mcg of T4 and 14 mcg of T3 per day. I am now down to 112 mcg and 3.5 mcg T3 per day. The decrease in meds is due an increase in lab values (hyper readings). A year ago my T4 level was 1.4 on 112 mcg on a trial, last month it was 1.89 on 112mcg. My lab levels started increasing after I stopped drinking, cooking and making coffee with tap water(fluoridated water). No tea either as iris very high in fluoride. I started using reverse osmosis and distilled waters after having symptoms of hypothyroid while using dentist prescribed fluoride. I never dreamed that fluoride would be the cause. It took from mid may until mid July for the symptoms to go away. Since then, July 2010, my levels have been increasing and I takes less meds per my drs instructions. I feel fine, except between visits when the level I'm on becomes too much and I have symptoms of hyperthyroid. At 1.89, I am over ( normal high is 1.7). My dr did not reduce the mcg since my T3 is within range. I suspect I will have to back off some of the mcg befor my next 6 month check up. So, my thyroid meds work better without fluoride...or would anyone do better without fluoride?
I have no family history of thyroid disease, and yet I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism 10 years ago.
It's interesting to note that fluoride was once used in Europe to treat hyperthyroid patients, to LOWER overactive thyroids. Doses started at 2mg and ranged to I think 10mg. Patients took oral treatments or bathed in water treated with fluoride.
Public water is often fluoridated, starting at a level of .7mg/L and most adults drink at least 2 liters of water a day, as well as absorbing that fluoridated water in the shower, using fluoride dental products, consuming food and beverages processed with fluoridated water or treated with fluoride-containing pesticides,etc. According to a 1991 Department of Health and Human Services study, people in fluoridated communities were receiving up to 6 times the "optimal" level of fluoride from multiple sources.
So, in my opinion, fluoride can most-definitely affect SOME people's thyroid conditions. It is said that fluoride replaces or interferes with iodine absorption, so I think this explains a lot.
I decided to do a little experiment myself and started avoiding drinking water with fluoride and fluoride dental products to see if this would affect my hypothyroid condition. In seven months, my doctor has lowered my thyroid medication from 150 to 137 to 125 to 100 and I am still having symptoms of hyperthyroidism. My doctor is trying to get the dose right and continues to lower the dose after I have been on this med for 10 years and my dose has NEVER been lowered, only raised.
This has been my experience. For myself, I see no downside in avoiding fluoride. If you look at modern data, the largest studies show no difference in tooth decay in fluoridated or non-fluoridated communities. Even if you choose to keep using fluoride toothpaste, at least you are spitting that out! After all, fluoride is meant to be a topical treatment.
I now plan to install a shower filter to see if I can avoid absorbing fluoride. This is just my own personal journey.
It's still controversial. Fluoride can cause pitting/discoloration of teeth if consumed in too high quantities when teeth are developing, but I haven't seen any sound science to prove that it affects the thyroid gland.
EPA has set a limit of 4.0 mg/L for primary standards and a secondary limit of 2.0 mg/L. The secondary standard is not enforceable, unless your State adopts it. Here's a fact sheet by EPA, last updated July 23, 2013:
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