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Tennessee Communities Receive CDC Fluoridation awards

Tuesday, May 20, 2014 | 08:19am

NASHVILLE – The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has presented Water Fluoridation Quality Awards to 103 community water systems across Tennessee. Community water fluoridation is the adjustment of fluoride in drinking water to a level that is safe and effective for preventing tooth decay.

The CDC awards recognize communities that achieved excellence in community water fluoridation by maintaining a consistent level of fluoridated water throughout 2012. Tennessee was one of 32 states to have community water systems earning the awards.

“Fluoride is a naturally occurring mineral found in water,” said Suzanne Hayes, DDS, director of the Tennessee Department of Health Oral Health Services. “By adjusting the amount of fluoride in its water supply system, a community can help residents of all ages prevent tooth decay and have improved oral health. Research shows every $1 invested in fluoridation saves at least $38 in costs for future dental treatment.”

“We know preventing tooth decay has many important dividends, including helping more people keep their natural teeth and avoiding more costly restorative dental care later in life,” said TDH Commissioner John Dreyzehner, MD, MPH. “Having healthy teeth also heightens self-esteem, affects social interactions, impacts learning success and even enhances the ability to get a job.”   

Community water fluoridation has been recognized by the CDC as one of the ten great public health achievements of the 20th century. Nearly 73.9 percent, or 204 million people in the U.S., are now served by community water systems with optimally fluoridated tap water. CDC research also shows people in communities with fluoridated water have about 25 percent fewer cavities over their lifetime.

“Adjusting the amount of fluoride in water is the equivalent of food producers adding iodine to salt, folic acid to bread and vitamin D to milk,” Dreyzehner said. “Generations of adults and children otherwise may not have had access to the important benefits from these silent health protections.”  

Currently more than nine out of ten Tennesseans on community water systems have access to optimally fluoridated water. The first community water system in Tennessee to adjust its fluoride level was Milan, more than 62 years ago. Tennessee community water systems earning the CDC awards for 2012 include:

Second South Cheatham Utility District

Humboldt Utilities - Water Department

Alcoa Water System

Huntsville Utility District

Anderson County Water Authority

Jackson Water System

Arthur-Shawanee Utility  District

Jamestown Water Department

Athens Utilities Board

Jellico Water Department

Atwood Water System

Johnson City Water Department

Bedford County Utility District

Kingston Water System

Big Creek Utility District

Knoxville Utilities Board

Bloomingdale Utility District

La Vergne Water System

Bon Aqua-Lyles Utility District

Lafollette Utilities Board

Bradford Water System

Lexington Water Systems

Brownsville Water Department

Livingston Water Department

Bruceton Water System

Loudon Utilities Board

Byrdstown Water Department

Metro Lynchburg/Moore County

Caryville—Jacksboro Utilities

Martin Water Department

Centerville Water System

Maryville  Department of Water Quality Control

Clinton Utilities Board

Maury City Water Department

Columbia Power and Water System

Milan Water Department

Cumberland Utility District

Millington Water Department

Dayton Water Department

Morristown Water System

Decatur Water Department

Mountain City Water Department

Decherd Water Department

Murfreesboro Water Department

Duck River Utility Commission

Naval Supply Activity- Midsouth

Dunlap Water System

New Johnsonville Water Department

Dyer Water Department

Newbern Water Department

Dyersburg Water Department

Newport Utilities Board

Eastside Utility District

Northeast Knox Utility District

Estill Springs Water Department

Northwest Clay County Utility District

Fayetteville Public Utilities

Oakland Water Department

Fort Campbell Water System

Nashville Water Department #2 – Old Hickory

Gallatin Water Department

Oneida Water and Sewer Commission

Gates Water Department

Paris Board of Public Utilities

Gatlinburg Water Department

Parsons Water Department

Gladeville Utility District

Pigeon Forge Water Department

Gleason Water Department

Plateau Utility District

Greeneville Water & Light Commission

Portland  Water System

Halls Water System

Pulaski Water System

Hartsville-Trousdale County Water/Sewer

Puryear Water System

Henderson Water Department

Reelfoot Utility District

Hendersonville Utility District

Ridgely Water System

Henry Water System

Ripley Water System

Hixson Utility District

Rockwood Water System

Savannah Valley Utility District

Tennessee American Water Company

Sevierville Water System

Trenton Water System

Somerville Water System

Trezevant Water System

South Fulton Water System

Trimble Water System

South Pittsburg Water System

Waverly Water Department

Sparta Water System

West Knox Utilities District

Spencer Water System

White House Utility District

Suck Creek Water System

Tennessee American-Sequatchie Valley

Sweetwater Utility Board

Winchester Water System

Tellico Area Services System



The American Dental Association has been a proponent of fluoridation since 1950. For more information from the ADA, visit


The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. TDH has facilities in all 95 counties and provides direct services for more than one in five Tennesseans annually as well as indirect services for everyone in the state, including emergency response to health threats, licensure of health professionals, regulation of health care facilities and inspection of food service establishments.  Learn more about TDH services and programs at

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