FDA warns about teething jewelry after infant death

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is warning parents and caregivers about the danger of teething necklaces and teething jewelry after the death of an 18-month-old child.

The FDA said that teething jewelry usually made with various materials such as amber, wood, marble or silicone, can be of serious risk to children or adults using them.

They said that choking, strangulation, injury to the mouth, and infection can occur when using the teething jewelry beads.

Choking can happen if the jewelry breaks and a small bead enter the child's throat or airway.

Strangulation can also occur if a necklace is wrapped too tightly around the child’s neck or if the necklace catches an object such as a crib.

Injury to the mouth or infection can happen if a piece of the jewelry irritates or pierces the child or adults's gum.

Teething jewelry is commonly used to provide sensory stimulation or relieve certain ailments for children or adults with special needs, autism, or ADHD.

Alternatives to the teething jewelry include rubbing inflamed gums with a clean finger or providing a teething ring made of firm rubber.

The FDA will continue to closely monitor reports associated with jewelry used for relieving teething pain and will communicate further as warranted.

The agency encourages consumers and health care professionals to report injuries or events that occur from using teething jewelry by filing a report at 1-800-FDA-1088 or online at MedWatch, the FDA Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting program.

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