The bottled water industry provides both fluoridated and non-fluoridated brands to provide consumers with choice, quality and convenience. A number of IBWA member companies produce fluoridated bottled water for consumers who want fluoride in their drinking water and wish to choose bottled water.
There is no correlation between the increased consumption of bottled water and an increase in cavities. In fact, bottled water does not contain ingredients that cause cavities.
There are many sources of fluoride, and the amount of fluoride exposure varies greatly by community and individual. Consumers should look at how much fluoride they are receiving as part of an overall diet and should contact their health care provider or dental care provider for their recommendation. Too much exposure to fluoride can lead to a condition called fluorosis, which results in stains to the teeth.
Fluoride Intake for Infants and Young Children
The American Dental Association (ADA) on November 9, 2006 released an interim guidance document on the use of fluoridated bottled water (Since replaced as of January 2011: http://jada.ada.org/content/142/1/79.full). The "Interim Guidance on Fluoride Intake for Infants and Young Children" clearly did not advise against the use of bottled water containing fluoride. It recommended that consumers who choose to feed infants using liquid concentrate or powdered infant formula and wish to use bottled water select a brand that is "fluoride free or contains low levels of fluoride." This guidance was offered for parents of infants - defined as children ages 12 months and younger - and did not advise against serving bottled water with fluoride to children older than one year. ADA also clearly stated that, "The occasional use of water containing optimal levels of fluoride should not appreciably increase a child's risk for fluorosis."