Press Release from the MN Department of Health

February 2021

The City of International Falls has been recognized with a 2019 Water Fluoridation Quality Award for excellence in community water fluoridation. These awards are given by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC} every year to communities maintaining a consistent level of fluoride in drinking water throughout the year.

Fluoride is natural to our environment. It is found in soils and water. Community water fluoridation adjusts the natural levels of fluoride to help prevent tooth decay. Fluoride helps strengthen teeth and has been shown to help prevent cavities.

Studies show that community water fluoridation prevents at least 25 percent of tooth decay in children and adults, even in a time when fluoride is widely available from other sources, like fluoride toothpaste.

“Providing fluoridated water through community water systems is an evidence-based, cost­ effective and equitable way to prevent cavities and promote good health,” says Prasida Khanal, state oral health director at the Minnesota Department of Health. “Communities like the city of International Falls play a key role in ensuring all Minnesotans can thrive.”

Research shows community water fluoridation can provide a return on investment ranging from $4 for small communities for every dollar spent to as much as $27 for large communities. CDC named it one of the top 10 public health achievements of the 21st century.

”The Minnesota Department of Health extends congratulations to all the communities receiving awards for their commitment to maintaining water fluoridation and protecting the health of their residents,” says Sandeep Burman, manager of the state’s Drinking Water Protection program.

For questions about the award or community water fluoridation, please contact or

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