A meta-analysis showed that children with higher fluoride exposure have lower IQs than similar children with lower exposures. Circulating levels of fluoride in blood and urine in children have also been linked quantitatively to significantly lower IQ. Other human and animal studies indicate that fluoride is a developmental neurotoxicant and that it operates in utero. Economic impacts of IQ loss have been quantified. The objective was to use data from the meta-analysis and other studies to estimate a daily dose of fluoride that would protect all children from lowered IQ, and to estimate economic impacts. We used two methods: traditional lowest-observed-adverse-effect (LOAEL)/no-observed-adverse-effect level (NOAEL); and benchmark dose (BMD). We used 3 mg/L in drinking water as an “adverse effect concentration,” with reported fluoride intakes from food, in the LOAEL/NOAEL method. We used the available dose–response data for the BMD analysis. Arsenic, iodine, and lead levels were controlled for in studies we used. BMD analysis shows the possible safe dose to protect against a five-point IQ loss is between 0.0014 and 0.050 mg/day. The LOAEL/NOAEL safe dose range estimate is 0.0042–0.16 mg/day. The economic impact for IQ loss among US children is loss of tens of billions of dollars.
Part of the book: Neurotoxins