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FDA Warns Parents About Teething Tablets

Parents should stop using homeopathic teething tablets and gels that the agency says might be causing seizures in their babies, according to an FDA news release. The over-the-counter products could cause seizures, difficulty breathing and other symptoms that may need immediate medical attention.

The FDA says there are “safe alternatives” for teething soreness, but it’s important to note this isn’t the first time the agency has put out warnings on teething aids. A few years ago they warned against products with benzocaine in them. Benzocaine is a topical anesthetic that was being used in teething gels as well as cough drops and throat sprays.

That they’re now coming out with another warning highlights the fact that drugs of any kind should be avoided with teething. A good alternative is to lightly dampen a clean wash cloth made of organic materials, then place it into the fridge or freezer. Once cooled, your baby can safely chew on that. For more "bulk," simply tie a knot at the end, or fold it a few times.

For other aches and pains, it’s important to remember that many pain relievers that adults think nothing of popping, such as aspirin and acetaminophen, can be harmful to children even in small doses. And prescription drugs such as oxycodone can be deadly: In 2004 and 2005, adverse drug events were the third leading cause of nonfatal injuries among infants treated in hospital emergency departments, and the sixth leading cause of nonfatal injuries among children 1 to 4 years old.
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