Is there fluoride in Yorkshire's water?

Choppy waters

We don't put fluoride into Yorkshire's water

Yorkshire Water and other water companies are governed by Local Authorities and Public Health England on the issue of fluoridation of water. It is up to each local authority to conduct consultations on proposals of new fluoridation schemes. If local authorities carry out proper public consultation and can prove the public supports such a move, they can ask Public Health England to ask their local water company to fluoridate.

Any fluoride that is present is naturally occurring. You can visit our tool for checking what's in your water to find out the fluoride levels in your water.

What are water fluoridation and fluoride?

Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral found in water in varying amounts across the world. Adding fluoride to water, known as water fluoridation, has been known to have a positive effect on dental health because it can help to prevent tooth decay. Fluoride can be found in many of the foods we eat, including lettuce, avocados, and strawberries. It’s also added to many brands of toothpaste.

In some areas of the UK, fluoride is added to the water supply under strict regulation. Local authorities must carry out their own public consultations on proposals of new fluoridation schemes. If local authorities can prove that the public supports adding fluoride to the water supply, they can ask Public Health England to ask their local water company to fluoridate.

Is fluoride safe in drinking water?

Fluoride, along with many other minerals like calcium, is found naturally at low levels in many areas across the UK.

The quality of drinking water in Britain is controlled by some of the tightest regulations in the world, with standards set by the European Commission for over 50 different substances.

The UK government has also implemented its own stricter standards to protect public health.

Some standards are aren't related to health, but affect the taste and appearance of your water supply.

At Yorkshire Water, we’re committed to providing continuous clean water and sanitation for Yorkshire’s homes both now, and for the future. It’s part of our Blueprint for Yorkshire over the next 25 years.

Read more about our Blueprint for Yorkshire

How much fluoride is in drinking water?

As it stands, none of Yorkshire Water’s supply is artificially fluoridated.

Any fluoride that is present in the water is naturally occurring at well below the health and safety standards set by the EU and the UK government.

Does fluoride help with tooth decay?

During the early 20th century, research found people who drank water with naturally occurring fluoride had better dental health than people in areas without fluoride in their water supply.

Since then, some water companies, backed by organisations like the World Health Organisation, have added fluoride to the water supply because of its positive effect on tooth decay.

The history of fluoride in the water supply

The first water fluoridation schemes started in the US in 1945. The first similar scheme in the UK didn’t happen until nearly 20 years later in 1965.

Currently, nearly 6 million people in England get artificially fluoridated water. This brings the fluoride level up to around 1mg of fluoride per litre of water, which is the level found to reduce tooth decay levels.