Water Fluoridation in Wichita

Updated 09/20/12

The Kansas Bureau of Oral Health, a division of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, has released its 2012 “Smiles Across Kansas” Report, a comprehensive survey of the oral health of Kansas children.

The reports finds that Wichita children are facing a higher rate of tooth decay because our water is not fluoridated:

One of the most notable regional statistics is that fifty-eight percent (58%) of children in South Central Kansas have experienced dental caries. This is the worst region in the state on this measure, a full ten points higher than the state as a whole. South Central Kansas is home to the Wichita metro area, the largest city in Kansas that does not fluoridate their community water supply. As South Central Kansas has many of the same advantages of the North East region (a large dental professional community, multiple safety net dental clinics, local foundations and academic institutions with interests in oral health), the lack of community water fluoridation is a probable causal factor for the significantly higher level of disease in Wichita’s children.

The report goes on to recommend community water fluoridation as a solution to Wichita’s increased rate of decay:


Get the Facts on Water Fluoridation

Visit www.fluoridevoterguide for all the facts on community water fluoridation before the Wichita vote on Novembr 6th.  Various Wichita health, dental and medical organizations have partnered to provide voters with information about the ballot question, who can vote along with several facts about water fluoridaiotn. The guide is available as a PDF file you can download and share with patients or friends.

Portland Oregon City Council Votes to add Water Fluoridation

Now that Portland, OR (read statement by Oregon Mayor Sam Adams) has voted to approve water fluoridation, Wichita has become the largest city in the United States that has not approved water fluoridation.  In the last few days, Phoenix, Portland and Milwaukee have taken pro-active steps to implement or keep water fluoridation in their cities.

More than 520 Wichita Medical Professionals have Endorsed Water Fluoridation

“Wichita’s dentists, physicians, pediatricians, and other medical professionals understand that community water fluoridation is a vital part of improving the health of Wichitans,” says Wichitans for Healthy Teeth.  “The Wichita District Dental Society and the Medical Society of Sedgwick County agree that without community water fluoridation, we are not as healthy as we could be.”

List of Signatories

Well respected health organizations have partnered together to create a simple voter guide meant to be shared with patients, friends, family, and neighbors.

“This is about more than teeth. It’s about the quality of life and education here in Wichita,” Wichitans for Health Teeth said in a statement released last week.  “Just last week, a study from California showed a clear connection between poor dental health and lower grade-point averages among schoolchildren. In 2010, more than 4000 people were treated at Sedgwick County hospitals due to toothaches and other dental problems — and many of these ailments could have been prevented.”

This summer over 11,300 Wichitans signed a petition in support of water fluoridation . Poll after poll has shown that Wichitans support fluoridation by a roughly 2-to-1 margin.

The Wichita District Dental Society has partnered with several other respected health organizations to create the simple voter guide.  WDDS urges Wichita residents to view the guide, print the 2 page PDF version and start distributing it right away.


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