Impact of Ground Water and Tea on Daily Fluoride Intake in Nalgonda District, Telangana, India

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Gopalan Viswanathan, C. Manivannan, Pandian Bothi Raja, S. Siva Ilango, R. Deepa, K. Meenakshi Sundaram, K. M. Saravanan


Prevalence of fluorosis is mainly due to the consumption of fluoride-rich ground water and tea in various parts of the world. This study aimed to assess the quantitative contribution of ground water, home-made and tea shop made tea on daily fluoride intake and prevalence of fluorosis among children compared with adults in endemic villages of Nalgonda district, Telangana, India. Hence, eleven villages in Nalgonda district were selected for this study. Prevalence and severity of dental fluorosis among 8-14-year-old children (n = 454) and above 18-70-year-old adults (n = 687) were examined through community fluorosis index measurement. Ground water (n = 87), home-made tea (n = 55) and tea shop made tea (n = 33) samples were collected from all selected villages for fluoride analysis using fluoride ion selective electrode method. About 95% (n = 83) ground water samples were contaminated with fluoride more than the WHO recommended limit 1.5 mg/L and 81% houses in study villages were using groundwater for drinking and cooking. The daily fluoride intake level through consumption of groundwater and tea for children and adults were about 4.2 times and 3.5 times higher than the recommended level of 0.06 mg/kg-day, respectively. In average, 70% children and 72% adults in the study villages were under the risk of different degrees of dental fluorosis. There was no significant difference observed in prevalence (p = 0.8003) and severity (p = 0.9281) of fluorosis between children and adults. About 80% children and 96% adults possessed the habit of drinking tea with high frequency. Hence, it is recommended to the government authorities to take serious steps to supply safe public drinking water regularly with adequate level to the identified fluorosis endemic villages. Moreover, the people in the fluorosis affected areas need more concern and awareness about the toxic effects due to the consumption of fluoride-rich drinking water and tea. Keywords: Community fluorosis index, Ground water, Home-made tea, Fluoride intake, Tea intake.

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