Tap water and bottled water are generally comparable in terms of safety. However, there is a long-standing argument about which one is better for you to drink daily.
Let’s take a deeper look at what the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), regulation of water sources, manufacturing of bottled water versus the filtering of tap water, and the overall effects of both on your oral health.
What You Need to Know About Bottled Water
The FDA oversees bottled water, while the EPA regulates tap water. The FDA is not required to disclose bottled water sources, treatment processes, or contaminant reports.
The FDA has policies in place, specifically for manufacturing bottled water:
- Process, bottle, hold and transport bottled water under sanitary conditions
- Protect water sources from bacteria, chemicals and other contaminants
- Use quality control processes to ensure the health and safety of the water
- Sample and test source water and the final product for contaminants
What You Need to Know About Tap Water
The EPA has more inspection restrictions, while the FDA has a less secure disclosure of consumer information. If you have a public tap water source, the EPA is required to send an annual water quality report to residents disclosing information related to contaminant levels and potential health risks.
It is important to note that the EPA doesn’t regulate as heavily or at all in rural communities, at private wells, or in older homes. If you are concerned, you can test the water yourself with a consumer test package sold by commercial labs at a reasonable price. For a list of labs near you, call the EPA Safe Drinking Water Hotline at 1-800-426-4791.
Which One Is Better?
In 1999, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) conducted a four-year review of the bottled water industry by testing the quality of 1,000 bottles of water. There was no assurance to prove that bottled water is cleaner or safer than tap. Results showed that an estimated 25% of the bottled water was just tap water in a bottle and 22% of the bottled water contained chemicals at levels above state health limits. If consumed over a long period of time, some of those contaminants could cause health problems and cancer, especially for people with weakened immune systems.
There is a Difference for Your Oral Health
The choice to drink tap water or bottled water seems to have the same results overall. However, tap water may be considered more natural, safe, effective, and saves money because it is used to provide community fluoridation water systems. Water fluoridation is the adjustment of fluoride to a recommended level for preventing tooth decay.
Fluoride in water is the most efficient way to prevent one of the most common diseases – tooth decay. An estimated 51 million school hours and 164 million work hours are lost each year due to dental-related illness. Community water fluoridation prevents 25% of tooth decay in children and adults; this success is noted as 1 of 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
So, in the end, tap water may be a better option for your oral health with the presence of fluoride.
At Advanced DDS, your Garden City Dentist, we use Vistaclear water filtration system which removes 99.9999% of all chemicals, microbes, and contaminants in our water to ensure that your receiving the cleanest water during your dental visit. Call to schedule an appointment today at (516) 825-1100.
Advanced DDS is proud to serve the surrounding cities: Mineola, Hempstead, West Hempstead, Franklin Square, Uniondale, New Hyde Park, Westbury, North New Hyde Park, Roosevelt, North Merrick, Roslyn, Carle Place, Williston Park, Old Westbury, Albertson, East Meadow, Garden City Park, Floral Park, East Garden City and many more.