Posts Tagged ‘teeth’

Warning on Baby Orajel

I got this email from a friend and usually don’t give much stake to such emails, but this one made me do a little Googling, and it appears such a situation is likely to occur when using Baby Orajel.

Here is the content of the email:

Dear all,
I hope everyone is enjoying their summer. Some of you already know, but we wanted to make everyone aware of a terrifying experience that we had over the weekend. Thank g-d, everything’s ok now but we thought friends and family would want to be aware and would want to advise others with babies

Zane’s been teething pretty badly for the past few days, and we decided to give him Baby Orajel on Sunday afternoon. We’ve given it to him a few times previously, when his first two teeth cut through, and never had a problem. Scott and I were both sitting with Zane on the floor in his room when I rubbed a dosage on his upper gum. Seconds after I gave it to him, he made a face as if he were crying but no noise came out. I picked Zane up and he immediately went limp in my arms and his face turned blueish. He was not panicking or gasping for air – he was lifeless. This lasted for approximately 15 seconds, but felt like an eternity. Words cannot convey our feelings during that time (or even now, ever) as we attempted to revive our son. No parent should ever experience such a feeling and no person should ever see something like this happen to a loved one. Without a doubt it was the scariest moment of our lives. Ultimately, Zane “came to” and began to cry hysterically. Thank g-d!!!!!!!!

We spent the evening at the hospital, where Zane underwent numerous tests, all of which came back normal. We also spoke with Zane’s pediatrician, who stated that she advises against the use of this product because its purpose is to numb and if it gets into an infant’s throat, it
may stop them from breathing. Obviously, we wanted to learn more about this product and why this happened so we conducted some internet research. Interestingly, we came across some postings of parents with similar experiences. Further, one website listed a side effect as, “difficulty breathing and grey/blueish face.” Also, when we called Zane’s daycare to let them know what happened, the owner said that she’s heard of this happening before. It’s surprising then that no such warning is on the bottle and that more people do not discuss the negative and possible deadly implications of the use of this product.

We don’t want to imagine what could’ve happened if we had given this to him at night, in his crib, as we (and many others) have done in the past, and then walked away (although, of course we monitor him throughout the night).

To reiterate, the reason we share the above with you is to strongly advise you to throw away any Baby Orajel products you have at home and please advise your friends and family of the same. Trust us, it’s not worth the possible side effects.

Best,
Scott and Allison

Again, this is an email I received, so can’t vouch for the validity, but it seemed realistic enough. They did not mention how much of the product was given — did they give more than the recommended dose or give more doses in a 24 hour period than the directions stated? It sounds like normal use, but again we don’t know, so I felt it was worth sharing, if not just as a reminder to use medications as directed.

I did run a snopes.com search on it and the status is undetermined and they are researching it.

In my Google search, I came across this warning on Orajel in general, which does list symptoms as those seen in the baby mentioned in the email. The most alarming is that an overdose can result in death. Good to know, but I don’t remember seeing such info on the packaging, and their website does not give any reference to this either.

To each his own when deciding to use Orajel or not for your baby, if you do, as with ALL medications — only use as directed and keep out of reach of children!

If you want a safer alternative, try Hylands Teething Tablets. They are homeopathic and work like a charm — better than Orajel in my opinion. It eases the pain just as fast but it lasts a lot longer. Plus, if you have a teething toddler, giving them a couple teething tablets is tons easier than trying to get your finger in the back of their mouth to apply Orajel, not to mention the definite possibility of getting bit! 🙂

I will keep watching out for the validity of the email (I don’t want to spread anything but the facts), but again, things like this are always a good reminder to use medications only as directed.

Get Your Toddler to Brush Her Teeth

Like many parents, getting our daughter to brush twice a day was a struggle at our house. Sometimes she would want to brush her teeth, but many other times she would exercise her independence and kick, yell “NO!” and fling her toothbrush across the room. I got frustrated for about 5 minutes and then decided to get a better plan. This is what I did. Hopefully it will help some other parents end the dental hygiene battle.

1. Buy several interesting tooth brushes and let your toddler decide which one she wants to use. Pick out different colors and those that sport your child’s favorite character. Toddlers like choices because they get to have a little control of the situation. So now instead of flinging the toothbrush (how she used to have control) she picks one of 5 different toothbrushes (how she how has control). So the question is not whether or not we are brushing our teeth, but what toothbrush are we going to use.

a. Toothbrushes come in all shapes and sizes, so make sure you pick an age appropriate toothbrush. Most have an age range on them.

b. Toothbrushes I selected: I found one with Elmo on it – Elmo rules in our house. I also found a green one with a train, a pink one with ladybugs and one that looks like my electric toothbrush: the Gentle Vibrations toothbrush by Summer Infant. She also has a plain white and yellow one that came with her infant grooming kit.

2. Find a fluoride-free, training toothpaste. We like Jason’s Natural Earth’s Best Organic Toothpaste. It is strawberry and banana flavor. You can find it at stores like Whole Foods. Do not use regular toothpaste until your child learns not to swallow it.

3. Make brushing teeth part of your morning and bedtime routine, just like reading a book.

4. Let your toddler brush the teeth of her favorite stuffed animal or doll.

5. Brush your teeth with your toddler and let her help you.

6. Make it fun. Stand her in front of the mirror and ask her to roar like a lion, brush a few teeth while she is roaring. Make other faces with her, of course picking faces that will allow you access to her teeth. My daughter has a toothbrush with a train on it, so we will say “Choo-choo!” and the train will chug along to brush her teeth.

7. Let your toddler brush them herself. Sometimes a little independence is all it takes. My daughter does very well and follows instructions – brush your bottom ones, now the top. You can also let her mirror you so she is brushing the same teeth you are in a mirror image.

8. Most importantly offer praise! Even if the toothbrush is only in her mouth 5 seconds before protesting, simply say “yeah! All done. You did a great job!” Put the toothbrush away and then try again the next time. Don’t fight her, but offering praise and not pushing will soon help your toddler realize brushing her teeth are really not a big deal. Continue to offer praise even when tooth brushing is well established – we just offer a simple “good job.” This will keep her confidence up. The best defense is a good offense. Bad behavior is discouraged by praising good behavior because toddlers like pleasing their parents.

9. Don’t stress about it. Infants and toddlers are like dogs in that they somehow have a 6th sense and know if you are tense or uncomfortable about something. I can say this is a very accurate statement for our daughter.

10. You may also choose to keep a chart or offer small rewards, like stickers, for when she does a good job.

This is what we did and it worked so well, that she sometimes uses two toothbrushes and will not let them go. She has fallen asleep with them, taken them to school, and has even tried to brush the dog’s teeth (don’t worry, I intervened). Of course, she still protests sometimes, she is a toddler after all, but now we mostly enjoy our tooth brushing time.

If you have your own tricks, please feel free to share them!

Good luck!