Safe Teething Relief

We feel your pain! Waking up at three o’clock in the morning to a screaming infant is never fun. And while tooth eruption can be painful to your infant, many of the over the counter teething relief products can be very harmful to your infant. A few years ago, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommended against the use of benzocaine containing oral gels (found in Oragel, Anbesol, Orabase and Hurricaine). It was found that in children under two the use of benzocaine containing oral gels could lead to a fatal condition called methemoglobinemia (basically, poisoning of the body’s oxygen carrying cells). Recently the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issues a similar recommendation against teething products containing Belladonna Alkaloids after belladonna containing teething tablets were linked to sixteen infant deaths. Belladonna comes from a poisonous plant called Night Shade. While in low levels it can be a very effective numbing agent especially to the mouth, higher levels can cause systemic symptoms and lead to death. Recently varying levels of belladonna was found in homeopathic teething tablets with some tablets testing above the safe limit. In addition, accidental ingestion of an entire bottle by a toddler could be very dangerous. We recommend use of teething rings and toys instead of medication. Gum massage also can be helpful! Just make sure that your infant won’t be able to choke on the toy or device. If that does not help we are happy to discuss other safe alternatives.
For more information on the dangers of teething products please visit: and

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