Fluoride in drinking water to several Mass. communities temporarily shutdown

BOSTON — The flow of fluoride to several Massachusetts communities will be temporarily paused for a few months starting in late February.

The shutdown is due to a project to replace portions of the fluoride feed piping and equipment at the Carroll Water Treatment Plant, according to the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority. The repairs will add fluoride and adjust it to the best levels for good oral health.

The plant supplies drinking water to MetroWest and metro Boston towns and cities.

The pause is expected to last 90 days or less.

While fluoride is important to dental health, officials say residents do not need to take any special action.

The MWRA included several tips for good oral health, including:

  • Brushing teeth with fluoride toothpaste. Aim for 2 minutes, twice a day, using a soft toothbrush.
  • Floss (clean between teeth). Aim for at least once a day.
  • Get a “check-up” with an oral healthcare professional, at least once per year or as directed by your healthcare professional.
  • For infants, schedule the first dental visit no later than the first birthday.
  • For children and adolescents, ask about protective teeth coatings called dental sealants at their “check-up”.
  • When seeing your medical or oral healthcare professional, ask about topical fluoride varnish (a brush-on protective mixture) that can be applied to children’s teeth up to every 3 months - starting from the time the first tooth comes into the mouth (about 6 months old) and continuing until at least age 5.

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