DENVER — Teething can be a tough time for baby and parents. Doctors say the first thing many moms and dads want to do is buy over counter medications to soothe their child.
New studies warn that doing that too often could be putting your baby at risk. Some products that contain a numbing agent called benzocaine can reduce the amount of oxygen in the blood in some cases.
While most infants are able to tolerate numbing gels, Dr. Dean Prina of Partners in Pediatrics says it’s best to use them sparingly and adds, “Parents do indeed sometimes go overboard with over the counter preparations. (They) can actually impact how a child swallows and manages secretions so I generally recommend a more natural approach.”
Natural remedies include putting your child’s pacifier or any teething toy in the refrigerator for a few minutes. Chewing on the cool toy will numb their gums and bring some comfort, but make sure not to give a child any object that is frozen.
Natural remedies are available at health food stores.
Teething continues from 2-4 months to 2 years in some cases. Doctors say most babies make it through just fine, but if your child experiences extreme pain or abnormal discoloration around the gum area see your pediatrician right away.
For more information about teething visit http://www.babycenter.com/0_teething_11243.bc and http://www.m.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/benzocaine-babies-not-good-mix