A recent flurry of "fluoride is bad!" posts are appearing on my social network news feeds. Usually I can simply ignore them after a brief look, but this one, stemming from a recent article in The Lancet, isn't easy enough for me to understand and apply or ignore.
The posts link to a March, 2014 article, Neurobehavioural effects of developmental toxicity, from The Lancet Neurology, Volume 13, Issue 3, which has the summary (emphasis added):
Neurodevelopmental disabilities, including autism, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, dyslexia, and other cognitive impairments, affect millions of children worldwide, and some diagnoses seem to be increasing in frequency. Industrial chemicals that injure the developing brain are among the known causes for this rise in prevalence. In 2006, we did a systematic review and identified five industrial chemicals as developmental neurotoxicants: lead, methylmercury, polychlorinated biphenyls, arsenic, and toluene. Since 2006, epidemiological studies have documented six additional developmental neurotoxicants—manganese, fluoride, chlorpyrifos, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, tetrachloroethylene, and the polybrominated diphenyl ethers. We postulate that even more neurotoxicants remain undiscovered. To control the pandemic of developmental neurotoxicity, we propose a global prevention strategy. Untested chemicals should not be presumed to be safe to brain development, and chemicals in existing use and all new chemicals must therefore be tested for developmental neurotoxicity. To coordinate these efforts and to accelerate translation of science into prevention, we propose the urgent formation of a new international clearinghouse.
I don't have full access to the article, so I can't refer to the epidemiological study it says shows fluoride to be a developmental neurotoxicant.
- What is a developmental neurotoxicant?
- How strong is the research that claims fluoride is a developmental neurotoxicant?
- What relationship, if any, does this report or research have with typical fluoride compounds used in US water treatment at the levels typically present in US water (sodium fluoride, fluorosilicic acid, or sodium fluorosilicate at 0.7 mg/L)?