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My Water's Fluoride - Glossary Skip Navigation Links
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A

Adjusted

A public water system with fluoride adjusted to a level that is beneficial for good oral health

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B

C

Community Water System

A public water system that serves the same people each day

Consecutive System

A water system that purchases water from an adjacent water system

Correlate

Laboratory precision comparison between split sample results 

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D

De-fluoridated System

A water system that has high natural fluoride levels and actively reduces the fluoride level in the water delivered to consumers

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E

F

Fluoridated

A water system that has fluoride at or above the recommended fluoride level which is 0.7 mg/L

Fluoridation

The adjustment of fluoride to a level beneficial for oral health

Fluoride Product

The source of fluoride in water: natural geological sources, sodium fluoride, sodium fluorosilicate, or fluorosilicic acid

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G

Ground Source

A ground source of water is a well, spring or other subsurface extraction of water

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H

I

In-Range

A sufficient number of samples reported to the CDC Water Fluoridation Reporting System were within the operating range specified by the state

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J

K

L

M

Multi-Source System

A water system that may have different sources of supply

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N

Natural Systems

A water system that has natural fluoride equal to or greater than the recommended level for good oral health

Non-Adjusted

A public water system with insufficient fluoride for good oral health

Non-Optimal

A water system that adjusts fluoride to the recommended level but has not reported operating verification of compliance to the CDC Water Fluoridation Reporting System

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O

Optimal

A water system that adjusts fluoride to the recommended level and has reported operating verification of compliance to the CDC Water Fluoridation Reporting System

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P

Points

Denotes a point-of-supply separate from other discrete sources.  A point can be a well, a river or lake intake, a connection to another adjacent water system or any discrete supply of water.  If a water system has two wells, it would have two points.

Public Water System

Defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a water system that serves 25 or more persons in a day for at least 2 months of the year, or has 15 or more connections

PWS Split

See Split Sample

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Q

R

S

Source

A source of water is a surface source such as a lake, river, reservoir, or groundwater sources such as a well or spring, or purchased water from an adjacent water system

Split Sample

Some states require periodic split sampling in which a water system will split a sample, test one part and report to the state, and the state tests the other part and compares the results to verify the accuracy of their testing method.

State Split

See Split Sample

Status

The designation of a water system as Adjusted, Consecutive, Defluoridated, Multi-source, Natural, Non-adjusted, or Variable,

The following table describes the statuses.

PWS Status Description
Adjusted
  • Adds fluoride to raise the natural concentration up to the optimal level for the prevention of cavities
  • May have its own water source.
  • May purchase non-fluoridated water from another system, then add fluoride
  • Is fluoridated
Consecutive
  • May be fluoridated or non-fluoridated depending on the source
  • Purchases water from another system
  • Does not adjust the fluoride concentration
Defluoridated
  • The finished water fluoride concentration delivered to consumers is reduced either by a treatment process which removes fluoride from the water, OR
  • Water with high fluoride is blended with waters with a low fluoride concentration
  • Does not purchase water from another system
  • Has a high natural fluoride concentration
Multi-Source
  • Has multiple sources
  • May have any of the following fluoridation statuses: Adjusted, Consecutive, Natural, Non-Adjusted
  • May be fluoridated or non-fluoridated depending on the source
Natural
  • Has a natural fluoride concentration above the minimum control range for that owner
  • May have an optimal control range that is different from the control range for an adjusted system
Non-Adjusted
  • Does not purchase water from another system
  • Has a natural fluoride concentration below the minimum control range
  • Does not adjust the fluoride concentration
  • Is Non-fluoridated
Variable
  • Does not purchase water from another system
  • Has multiple wells with different fluoride concentrations
    Note: With different wells with different fluoride concentrations, there may be zones of influence for each well in the distribution system having different fluoride concentrations depending on which neighborhood a residence may be located.
  • Has Fluoride concentration of the water delivered to consumers that varies widely throughout the year
  • Does not fit into one of the other water system categories

Sufficient Samples

The water system has reported a sufficient number of samples to the CDC Water Fluoridation Reporting System.

Surface Source

A surface source of water is a river, lake, or reservoir

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T

U

V

Variable Systems

Water systems that have multiple wells with different fluoride levels. May result in some neighborhoods having sufficient fluoride for oral health and other neighborhoods having insufficient fluoride for oral health.

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W

Water Source Ground

Water extracted from groundwater sources through a well or spring

Water Source Mixed

A public water system that obtains water from more than a single source  such as groundwater, surface water, or purchasing water from other water systems

Water Source Surface

Water withdrawn from surface sources such as a river, lake, or reservoir

Water System ID

Unique seven-digit ID assigned through the Environmental Protection Agency Safe Drinking Water Information System

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X

Y

Z

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