Bottled Water Contributing to Pediatric Tooth Decay?

A more recent look into what has been causing the rise in tooth decay in children has suspected bottled water to be the cause. It appears that “Bottled water may not have a sufficient amount of fluoride, which is important for preventing tooth decay and promoting oral health” according to a statement made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Just when parents thought that they were aiding in the prevention of tooth decay by leaning their children towards drinks that were free of sugar it appears a shock to most. Bottled water is everywhere and it has always seemed the healthiest choice in terms of choosing it over water out of the tap. In fact, a study by the Archives of Pediatrics found that about 45 percent of parents give their kids bottled water all of the time, completely avoiding tap water altogether. Another study, this time in the journal Pediatric Dentistry, found that 70 percent of parents gave bottled water alone or with tap water.

Statistics on Youth Tooth Decay

Tooth decay is affecting children of all income classes too, with decay showing in over half the children in lower income levels and by a third of the children in higher income levels.

Although there is no direct evidence that supports that bottled water is the cause for the rise in tooth decay amongst children, there is evidence that fluoride, the agent that is contained in tap water that protects against tooth decay, is not present in all bottled waters. The International Bottled Water Association admits that at least 20 of its 125 bottlers offer fluoridated bottled water.

If children were to neglect brushing with fluoride toothpastes as well as neglect recommended biannual checkups, they would likely be more susceptible to tooth decay. As fluoridation of water is known to directly prevent tooth decay, avoiding its use, either directly or indirectly, would be a mistake. This is perhaps why the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have labeled fluoride “One of the 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century.”