Is fluoride safe?

10. Fluoride, like iron and calcium, is a mineral, not a medicine.

Fluoride is added to water for the same reasons that vitamin D is added to milk: it’s a brilliantly simple way to provide many, many people with an important health benefit.

The Facts:
  • Fluoride is a nutrient, not a medicine. Medicine is used to cure or control a medical problem that has already been diagnosed, such as hay fever or high blood pressure. Fluoridated water is not a cure; it’s a proven way to prevent a medical problem: tooth decay.
  • Fortifying drinking water with fluoride is a lot like fortifying milk with Vitamin D. These additives prevent poor health. America has a history of fortifying foods or beverages to strengthen health—for example, adding iodine to table salt, fortifying milk with Vitamin D, and adding folic acid to breads and cereals.


No one can feel healthy when their teeth are infected and causing pain. The bad news is that tooth decay is still really common. The good news is that it’s really easy to prevent. Fluoride is both safe and effective. It’s an excellent way to help prevent decay before it begins!