If your baby is having sleepless nights due to teething, no doubt you will be searching tirelessly for something which will comfort them. Amongst the good advice you have been given, perhaps somebody has suggested an amber teething necklace, but what is it, how does it work and is it safe?
What is it?
Amber necklaces are available for both baby and mum. The theory states that upon wearing the amber necklace, body heat triggers the release of an oil called succinic acid. This acid occurs naturally in the body and is thought to have an analgesic effect on sore gums. However some scientists argue that there is no hard evidence which supports the effect of the oil actually relieving pain.
How safe is it?
Whilst many sites selling these type of amber necklaces will boast that the product is free of any harmful chemicals, health officials have raised concerns. Whilst the products are not meant to be chewed, there is a real risk of baby gnawing on the beads and potentially choking. Furthermore, the idea of a baby or small child wearing a necklace whilst unsupervised raises concerns over strangulation.
What alternatives can I consider?
There are many products available on the market which will enable your baby to get some relief from their sore gums. It is the action of “gumming”, which puts pressure on the gums and provides the relief. Babies are more than happy to put anything in their mouth so ensure all toys are large in size, if it will fit through a kitchen roll tube, the item is too small. Select a product which is manufactured from 100% natural materials.
Some teething products contain a gel which can be frozen when placed inside a freezer. Chilling a baby’s gum will ease pain and reduce inflammation. Alternatively chill pacifiers or spoons to alleviate sore gums.
When nothing seems to be working, ask you doctor about appropriate pain relief. Note that many numbing gels are not suitable for infants.