Water Fluoridation Data and Statistics

Key points

  • Community water fluoridation monitoring includes routine measurement of the fluoride level in adjusted water systems to ensure quality control.
  • CDC’s Water Fluoridation Reporting System enables states to manage the quality of their water fluoridation activities.
  • CDC uses these reported data to release national statistics on community water fluoridation.
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Monitoring quality

Community water systems regularly test water content to monitor compliance with state and local regulations and industry standards. Water systems that adjust the fluoride content in their water to the optimal level for cavity prevention also collect data to monitor fluoridation quality.

CDC recommends that state and local water system personnel take daily measurements of fluoride levels in their water distribution systems. They should have these results verified monthly by an independent state-certified lab.

These results are uploaded by drinking water engineers or health department program staff into the Water Fluoridation Reporting System (WFRS). Other relevant information, such as dates of facility inspections and operator training, is included.

WFRS is the principal tool maintained and used by CDC to help states manage the quality of their water fluoridation program. This helps identify where they need to put resources to improve communication, training, or engineering assistance. Using WFRS also makes states eligible for awards and recognition for the operational quality of their water fluoridation activities.

How are WFRS data used?‎

WFRS data are posted to two CDC public-facing databases. Oral Health Data is an open data platform that provides state level indicators of oral health status and public health interventions to prevent oral diseases. My Water's Fluoride provides information on the status of fluoridation operations for every public water system in the country.

Oral Health Data and My Water's Fluoride provide useful information to a variety of audiences, including program managers, decision makers, researchers, and the general public.

National fluoridation statistics

Biennially, CDC summarizes available WFRS data into National Water Fluoridation Statistics. These statistics include the estimated proportion of the U.S. population receiving fluoridated water, and the estimated proportion of people on community water systems that receive fluoridated water, both nationally and within each state.

These data are used to track progress toward the Healthy People objective of increasing the proportion of the U.S. population who receive optimally fluoridated water through community water systems.

Fluoridation statistics by year:

For statistics dating before 2016, click here and here.