Parents often ask me about amber teething necklaces. These are products that are geared toward teething babies that are said to help relieve teething pain. Unfortunately, there is no medical evidence to back up that claim. Dr. Andrew Weil, a leader in the field of integrative medicine, says these necklaces are not supported by modern science.
Worse still, these necklaces can pose a safety hazard to infants and small children. The risk is two-
fold: they can cause strangulation and choking. The risk is especially high if baby is wearing the necklace unsupervised while sleeping, for example.
If you do choose to use these necklaces, you should:
- Always supervise baby when they are wearing it.
- Put the necklace on a wrist or ankle, and not around the neck.
- Remove the necklace when your child is unattended, even if it is only for a short time.
- Remove the necklace when baby is sleeping.
Safer ways to soothe a baby include plastic or rubber chew toys, cold things (like a clean, damp wash cloth that has been twisted & frozen), gentle massage with your hands, or Tylenol when used appropriately. Stay away from numbing gels or creams that contain benzocaine as they can have harmful side effects.
As always, ask us if you have more questions!