The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has released the 2016 biennial water fluoridation statistics. Iowa is ranked 14th in the nation with over 2 million people receiving fluoridated water. In 2016, the CDC used a new methodology to generate more accurate population estimates, causing incomparable data to previous years.
The new methodology adjusts all state-reported data based on the U.S. Census Bureau State Population Estimates and the U.S. Geological Survey estimate to determine the percentage of a state population served by a public water supply. Prior to 2016, state-reported data were adjusted only if their population estimates exceeded those of the U.S. Census Bureau. This change in methodology indicates a lower estimated population with access to fluoridated water, nationally and in many states.
The Iowa Department of Public Health and over 100 national and international organizations, including the American Cancer Society, the World Health Organization and the American Medical Society, support the practice of community water fluoridation.
Over the past 75 years, water fluoridation has been proven to prevent cavities, the most common disease among children in the United States. In the same way other diseases, like osteoporosis and rickets, are prevented through fortifying milk and oils with vitamin D, cavities can be prevented with drinking water fluoridation. For more information on the health benefits of fluoride, visit https://idph.iowa.gov/ohds/fluoride.