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Zim inventor makes fluoride breakthrough

A MANICALAND-BASED scientist has developed a machine that removes excess fluoride in underground water, which causes widespread fluorosis in poor communities in Zimbabwe.


Fluorosis is a cosmetic condition that affects the teeth and is caused by over-exposure to fluoride during the first eight years of life.

Chengetai Dunga, based at Birchenough Bridge hospital, said he developed the Chengie Advanced Claypot Defluoridation plant after realising the extent of poor oral health in Zimbabwe’s rural areas.
“Most children are exposed to fluoride from ground water like boreholes, deep wells and industrial waste,” he said.

“Ground water should be tested for fluoride before being commissioned for use. The only solution to reduce fluorosis complication is through defluoridation of water.”

Dunga’s machine — which can purify enough water to fill 48 000 500ml bottles at a time — has been registered by the Health and Child Welfare ministry, as well as the Africa Regional Intellectual Property Organisation for patent.

“This technology will reduce fluorosis from grassroots upwards and has been recommended by the Ministry of Health and Child Care and Medical Research Council of Zimbabwe, among other organisations,” he said.

“It is not easy for one to know that they are affected by fluorosis, as it could only be detected by a professional dentist.

“Mild to moderate fluorosis produces white lines, streaks or spots.

“In more severe fluorosis, the teeth can become pitted and have brown, gray or black spots. The enamel may also have an unusual shape.”

According to the Columbia Dental School, fluorosis affects only the appearance of teeth. It does not result in cavities.

As a result, most treatment for fluorosis consists of masking the stain. Dunga said he was now scouting for investors to commercialise his invention.

7 Responses to Zim inventor makes fluoride breakthrough

  1. Dan Milonga February 14, 2016 at 10:11 am #

    1) Fluorosis DOES cause cavities.

    2) It is NOT a cosmetic condition only.

    Set this page for more scientific info:

    • Chengetai Dunga[Inventor fluorosis-Scientist] February 15, 2016 at 8:48 am #

      Good morning

      l am glad to be with you all at this moment of fluoride use,alert and its complications.
      Fluoride exposure (consumption of above 1ppm / 1mg/L will never be reffered to as cosmetic. l am happy the reporter has started
      a very good open PARATUTE get in and ask questions l will answer you from all angles of the globe.
      1) Fluorosis is irreversible , the only visible damage of excess fluoride is dental fluorosis. The invisible complications include kidney damage, skeletal fluorosis , joint pains, cripplling fluorosis, hip bone fractures.
      Cosmetic answer- when ever you see children developing white snow teeth ,its dental fluorosis thats when people call it cosmetic its the dangers of Consuming excess fluoride.According to Thystrup and Fejerskov TFI index [1988] its score 1 (one) of fluorosis severity.
      In Zimbabwe we have 15 plus endemic districts with fluorosis namely Chimanimani-Hot Springs, Chipinge, Zaka, Buhera, Gwanda, Beitbridge, Plumtree, Tsholotsho. Binga, Gokwe North and South.Kariba, Nyanga, Honde Mt Darwin. Its also prevalent in SADC. Be happy we have our own Zimbabwean invention

      Dont panic about fluorosis l know its you first time to discuss this publicly we will reduce the fluoride in your water. USE CHENGIE ADVANCED DFLUORIDATORS.


  2. Terence Kodzanai February 16, 2016 at 1:01 pm #

    How are the affected communities going to know about the problem of fluorosis and the defluoridation invention.

  3. Chengetai Dunga[Inventor fluorosis-Scientist] February 16, 2016 at 1:34 pm #

    The mitigation program will include the commercialization of the 1) PATENT , 2) press info,3) Tv ,4) inter -Ministrial (Government Ministries Multisectorial approach eg Ministry of Health co odinating other stake holders such as NGOs Donors, The press will play a pivotal role in disseminating written info and people can have something to read. Health education by health workers and Allied Universities will be co-opted. The education program should be wide spread just like how the Ministry embarked on other diseases such as TB, HIV-AIDS etc. Government commitment to fluorosis is encouraged.

  4. Chengetai Dunga[Inventor fluorosis-Scientist] February 16, 2016 at 1:44 pm #

    Hie Dan
    Yesterday l didnt see the question on cavities, teeth with fluorossis are hypomineralized the enamel is not full calficied or mineralized hence prone to caries. Also depends with the score / severity of exposure to fluoride. The more you are exposed to fluoride during tooth enamel formation (enamlogenesis) the strength of the teeth is very weak. The porous spots you see is a sign of weakness of structure of the tooth. The spots are easily affected by caries development.

    Bye for now

  5. BIKITA MAKOMO February 19, 2016 at 12:30 am #

    Zimbabwe is rich with talented intellectuals. I don’t know where we miss it. Where is the government and non- governmental organisations to support such a pleasant work?

  6. zak February 20, 2016 at 9:10 pm #

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