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BACKGROUND: The protective effect of community water fluoridation (CWF) against dental caries may be modified by secular changes in health behaviour. We aimed to determine the contemporary association between fluoride in public water supplies (PWS) and dental caries indicators and inequalities in England. METHODS: We estimated exposure to CWF and PWS fluoride concentrations from national monitoring data, using Geographic Information Systems and water supply boundaries, categorizing mean period exposure into <0.1, 0.1-<0.2, 0.2-<0.4, 0.4-<0.7 and ≥0.7 mg/l. We used area-level health outcome and confounder data in multivariable regression models to determine the association between fluoride and caries outcomes and calculated preventive fractions using these coefficients. RESULTS: The odds of caries and of severe caries in 5-year-olds fell with increasing fluoride concentration in all SES quintiles (P 

Original publication




Journal article


J Public Health (Oxf)

Publication Date





462 - 469


P-based and preventative services, dentistry and oral health, public health, Child, Humans, Adolescent, Child, Preschool, Fluorides, Fluoridation, Dental Caries, England, Oral Health