CONCORD, N.H. — A handful of New Hampshire communities are being recognized for efforts to promote oral health through fluoridated water, though the state overall lags behind the rest of the country.

Fluoridation involves adjusting the level of fluoride in drinking water to an amount that is effective for preventing tooth decay. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control considers community water fluoridation one of the 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century, and gives annual to communities to recognize such efforts.

The latest round of awards includes water departments in Concord, Dover, Laconia, Lebanon, Lancaster, Manchester, and the University of New Hampshire/Durham system.

New Hampshire ranks 44th in the country for the fluoridation of public water systems, with less than half of residents served by public systems receiving fluoridated water.

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