Vol. 3, Issue 10 (2014)
Health impacts, control and sources of fluoride – A Review
Drinking water is the largest contributor of fluoride in daily intake. Dissolution of fluoride-containing rock minerals is the source of naturally occurring fluorides in groundwater whereas application of phosphate fertilizers or sewage sludges or pesticides are the artificial source of fluoride. Variation in fluoride concentrations can cause dental and skeletal fluorosis. Fluoride toxicity can also cause non-skeletal diseases like aches and pain in the joints, non-ulcer dyspepsia, Polyurea (tendency to urinate more frequently) and polydipsia (excessive thrust), muscle weakness, fatigue, anemia with very low hemoglobin levels, etc besides other reasons. Many researchers have used various types of inexpensive and effective adsorption media like clays, solid industrial wastes such as red mud, spent bleaching earths, spent catalysts and fly ash, activated alumina, carbonaceous materials, bone charcoal, natural and synthetic zeolites, etc. for the treatment of fluoride contamination. This paper focuses on sources of fluoride, its impacts on health and control measures.