A survey shows that New Hampshire ranks 43rd in the country for access to fluoride in public drinking water.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says only large states like Montana, Alaska, Idaho and Wyoming have lower percentages than New Hampshire.
The survey says less than 390,000 New Hampshire residents — less than half of the 834,000 people on public water systems — have access to fluoridated water.
Six communities have received a Water Fluoridation Quality Award from the CDC — Concord, Dover, Lancaster, Laconia, Lebanon and Manchester.
Dr. Peter Welnak, president of the New Hampshire Dental Society, says research shows that optimally fluoridated drinking water is a safe and simple way to help prevent cavities, keep tooth enamel strong and protect against tooth decay.