County Health board member takes Argos to task over Fluoride

MARSHALL COUNTY — The Argos Town Council has withheld adding fluoride to the town water. The decision was made some time ago based on recommendations of the Argos Water Works Operator in Charge. The Marshall County Board of Health touched base last week on the topic as board member Dr. Thomas Pedavoli expressed his disappointment with the Argos council last week.

“We (council) decided the negatives outweighed the positives,” said Town Council President George Noll.

On June 1 of last year, Operator in charge of the Argos Water Works Nick Wood came before the town council and suggested no longer adding fluoride to the town water.

After surrounding towns Bourbon, North Liberty and Walkerton discontinued fluoridation, Woods decided it would be appropriate timing to suggest the Town of Argos do the same.

“We decided to follow the recommendations of our water department and exclude the fluoride,” said Noll, “It’s not even a cost issue, it can be put back in whenever.”

On Sept. 19 of last year Pedavoli, a dentist in Plymouth and a Marshall County Health Board Member, approached the council with his concerns about withholding fluoride from the drinking water.

“Eighteen months ago several towns decided to remove fluoride from their water,” Pavoli said, “Argos caught my attention since I have several patients from there.”

Pedavoli said he sent the Argos Town Council a packet of information regarding the benefits of fluoridation, all from credible and supported organizations.

Pedavoli also acquired the assistance of Jim Powers, Fluoridation Program Manager for the Indiana State Department of Health and Argos Dentist, Michael Dixon DDS in attempts to better educate the town council but has received no response to letters or packets of information he sent, he said.

One of those letters was signed by Powers, who indicated his support of fluoridation of town water. The letter stated fluoridation of water is supported as safe and effective for preventing tooth decay with appropriate levels of fluoride. In addition, there are several links to government organizations and other organizations for fluoridation.

Wood encouraged the council to speak with other towns regarding their decisions to stop fluoridation but also explained the savings would be no more then $2,500 but felt the potential negative side effects were far more compelling to discontinue fluoridation of the town water.

In Pedavoli’s professional opinion, without fluoridation the consequences of dental decay will be more prevalent in the years to come as many parents of children in his dental practice have become concerned.

“I hope that we can work with Argos, together to understand the current fluoride levels and discuss the health benefits of water fluoridation,” said Pedavoli.

(This is an abbreviated version of the story appearing in the June 19 edition of The Pilot News.)