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The Food and Drug Administration has released a statement warning against using medications commonly used for relieving the pain of teething in infants.
Teething, according to Nature World News, occurs in all children and can be very painful for the child, but there are better ways than using lidocaine-based gels to relieve the pain.
Too often, says the FDA, parents rub numbing medications on their children’s gums to relieve the pain of teething, but there are doctors who agree that there are other ways to treat the pain of teething.
Lidocaine, often prescribed for the pain, is potentially harmful and toxic for a young child’s body. There are other non-toxic alternatives available for parents with teething children.
Products, like lidocaine, have actually hurt children who have been given the numbing agent. Doctors have recommended that parents don’t use any benzocaine product (Baby Orajel, Orajel, Anbesol, Hurricaine, and Orobase) on any child under the age of 2.
The use of these gels has had serious impact on a number of children and has even been fatal. It has caused methemoglobinemia, which lowers the amount of oxygen in the blood stream and toddlers under the age of 2 are at great risk.
Children “teeth” every month from about six months to 3 years old. However, the FDA recommends, if your child’s gums are tender, to massage the gum with your finger or offer your child a teething ring, cold washcloth to chew on. Parents should supervise their child while with these objects to avoid choking.
"The cool object acts like a very mild local anesthetic," says Hari Cheryl Sachs, M.D., a pediatrician at FDA. "This is a great relief for children for a short time."