1/11 people are diabetic - World Diabetes Day 2019
14th November 2019
The aim of World Diabetes Day is to raise awareness of the challenges of living with diabetes, as well as… read more
This is certainly news worth sharing if you know someone who has a teething baby. At some time or other, many parents use pain relief products bought from a local chemist. Most of us don’t look at the list of teething gel ingredients – I know I never did. I trusted well known brands to offer me a safe product. Yet, since January 2019, in the UK teething gel has been taken off the unmonitored shelves, and can only be bought over the counter under advisement.
Therefore, it’s worth considering what’s in teething gels, whether it’s necessary to use it and what alternatives there are.
As baby’s first teeth begin to come though, whether they are the very first front teeth, or the larger back teeth, they have to break through the surface of the gums, which often causes some discomfort. Most babies start teething any time between five to ten months. In rare cases, some babies are born with natal teeth or develop neo-natal teeth within the first few weeks, but that’s even more unusual. Some babies develop their teeth later too. Babies usually have their full set of twenty first teeth by their third birthday.
The signs of an erupting baby tooth vary, but may include some or all of:
Teething babies are also just as susceptible to illness as they are at other times.
Monitor your baby as usual if there are other concerns, such as, but not limited to, diarrhoea and/or vomiting, a rash, coughing or a high temperature. Always contact your healthcare professionals for advice if you are concerned for your baby’s health. In England, the National Health Service helpline is available 24/7 by freephone on: 111.
As teething can be uncomfortable for the baby, and disturbing for parents, there are a range of pain relief treatments available – including teething biscuits, rings, toys, granules and gels.
The decision for carers is what to use to try to ease the pain and help both baby and parent feel calmer.
An article published in the British Dental Journal, on 27th September 2019, investigates the ingredients of teething gels, and other teething pain relief products.
The active ingredient approved for use in teething gels in the UK, is Lidocaine Hydrochloride. It’s a synthetic chemical compound, used as a local anaesthetic. Applied directly to the surface of tissue, it causes numbness and dulls feeling.
In teething gels, the concentration of Lidocaine is low. Of teething gels licenced for use in the UK, a product called Anbesol Teething Gel had the highest concentration of Lidocaine, at 1%w/w, compared to several products with the lowest quantity at 0.33%. It is worth noting that the well-known Bonjela Teething Gel has 0.33%, yet the Bonjela Junior Gel has 0.5%, so it’s worth checking the details and making the appropriate choice.
In addition, often teething gels include an antiseptic compound called Cetylpyridinium chloride (CPC) regularly found in mouth washes, toothpastes, nasals sprays and throat lozenges. It’s an effective ingredient for tacking oral bacteria and plaque, but in higher dose medicines has been linked to discolouration.
When getting a gel, it’s also worth looking at the list of excipients. It’s likely that Ethanol is the main carrier of the solution. It’s alcohol, distilled from plant materials.
Of course, these gels come in small tubes, and only a smear is used. Clear instructions will explain quantity and frequency of use, to keep the product safe. As with all medications, if you notice an allergic reaction, such as swelling or a rash, or any unexpected response, discontinue use immediately and consult your doctor.
The UK approved teething powders and granules are classified as either homeopathic or herbal. With these, though, what we need to look out for is the inclusion of sucrose. That’s sugar. As the sachet is emptied into baby’s mouth and the contents combine with the saliva, caoting the gums and any teeth, it will encourage bacteria to form plaque. Therefore, especially for older babies with more advanced dentition, it’s worth finding a brand that is sugar-free or using an alternative.
It’s good to avoid:
To relieve pain:
With a few alternative strategies up our sleeves, we may be able to reduce the need for gel.
We should keep in mind too, that if we read the labels and follow the instructions these medications are licensed and considered safe. They can be an enormous help so parents and baby pass a more peaceful and relaxed night, which is important.
Our community outreach team visits local schools to help children learn about oral health and value their teeth.
Practices providing NHS care, are encouraging parents to register their children. We’re supporting government initiatives such as Dental Check by 1 and Starting Well.
We very much enjoyed reading the lovely Saltash patient reviews we've received in response to our recent request for feedback. On behalf of all the staff, thank you so much for your lovely comments. We sincerely appreciate your kind words, and will also use your recommendations in our planning. SpaDental considers your review comments carefully. We read them all, and use the information we gather to guide our practice so we can keep on improving…More Testimonials
A very appreciative thank you to our patients from the clinicians and staff at SpaDental Chard. It has been a pleasure reading your comments because if our patients are happy, then we're happy. Feedback about the team and treatment from SpaDental Chard reviews "Everyone in the practice is efficient, professional and knowledgeable." - HCG "5 Star Dental Care - Being in the centre of Chard, [the SpaDental] surgery is easily accessible for most patients. The…More Testimonials
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Dental Surgeon and her assistant are helping anxious patients to manage dental visits more easily. High praise for the team! We know that it can be hard for people to come in to see the dentist. Here's one message: "I just wanted to say a huge thank you for your care at my recent dental visit. Lucy, I know because of your care and attention to my needs I feel so much better attending an…More Testimonials
We really appreciate all the reviews we're getting from patients who visit SpaDental Plymouth. Your feedback helps us feel confident we give good advice and offer a great dental service to Plymouth patients. Thank you! Here are some recent reviews: These two reviews highlight the importance of regular examination of the soft tissues in the mouth. "I feel... grateful to [my dentist] for referring me to Derriford hospital for a lump to be removed from…More Testimonials
At SpaDental Ledbury we're enjoying reading your reviews! In April, we asked you to share your experiences with us. We've been emailing our patients to ask you to fill in on-line forms so that we know how your appointments went. It's been heart-warming to read the kind things that you've said about us in your reviews. Thank you! Here are a few of the comments that we've received: "Very professional. Always polite and helpful. Easy…More Testimonials
Since we piloted the online feedback form for Plymouth patient appreciation or dissatisfaction with our practice, we've had over 300 responses. Thank you so much for taking the time to submit your views. Our review rating of 4.7 stars (out of 5) highlights Plymouth patient appreciation for the work we do. We're smiling with pride, and happy that you're happy! Here are two recent reviews: "Fantastic experience - I was on the NHS waiting list for over…More Testimonials