Ohh, the teething saga. The lovely time where your little one is constantly fussy and annoyed by their budding chicklets bursting through the surface.
Before my “Natural Mama” journey began, I stocked up on those plastic teethers for my baby. You know, the little ones filled with water (we think) that you can throw in the freezer to chill them a bit for sore gums? Little did I know, those plastic teethers were nothing but toxic territories, tainted with harmful chemicals that could enter my baby’s tiny body.
Disclosure: Heaven and Hand Knits provided me with products for this review. I was not financially compensated and all opinions are my own.
What Is Really In Plastic Teethers?
BPA or Bisphenol
I know what you’re thinking. “Everything today is BPA free!”. Well, as much as that may be the case in a lot of products on the market today, the substation is not much better. Many companies simply replace BPA with BPS — bisphenol-S — which is just as toxic, if not more toxic, than BPA. Just because a product is promoted as BPA-free doesn’t mean it’s safe, so it’s best to just steer clear of both.
Phthalates are often used to make plastic tethers soft and flexible. They may sound innocent, but phthalates are highly toxic. They have been classified as a “probable human carcinogen” by the EPA. Rats and mice fed phthalates also showed an increase in liver cancers over animals that had not been fed the chemicals.
Children may presumably take in even higher than average amounts because many chewing toys are made of highly phthalate-softened vinyl. The highest levels released from teethers and toys exceeded the acceptable daily intake level in studies, conducted in the Netherlands and Denmark. The short of it, keep all products containing phthalates away from you and your family.
From food packages and children’s toys to shower curtains and building materials, PVC (aka: polyvinyl chloride or vinyl) is all around us. But, from both an environmental and health standpoint, PVC is the most toxic plastic.
Here’s why: Vinyl chloride, the chemical used to make PVC, is a known human carcinogen, according to the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). Workers in PVC manufacturing facilities and residents of surrounding communities are at risk from exposure to these chemicals which contaminate the water, soil and air around these facilities. If these types of people are at risk, just imagine your tiny baby!
Which Safe Teethers To Choose Instead
Sometimes the best teething relief comes from your fridge! Frozen apple slices or a homemade ice pop could do wonders for your little one’s teeth and gums. (Be careful about potential choking)
Teethers made out of food grade silicone are generally safe and do not contain the toxins in convential plastics.
Natural Wood and Organic Fabrics
With wood and organic fabrics, you do not have to worry about any chemicals leeching into your baby’s system. Heaven and Hand Knits sent me over some beautiful, all natural teethers for my little babe to try out. Heaven and Hand Knits make a variety of teethers in an array of colors that you can customize to your personal taste.
These teething ring bunny ears are made from organic maple wooden ring and wool yarn.
Each ring is made from maple wood and sealed with organic beeswax and olive oil to soothe baby’s sore gums. Surrounding each ring for added texture is knit wool available in a variety of colors, made to look like bunny rabbit ears.
I let my little one try out these bunny ear teethers specifically and she LOVED chewing on the wood! She’s 6 months old, teething like a drooling bandit and very into the “touchy, feely fabric stage”. Although the wool wasn’t super fluffy and soft like the blankets she is used to, she still enjoyed the different texture and it kept her interest as any good teething toy should.
Heaven and Hand Knits not only makes adorable bunny ear teethers, but also make adorable swaddle sacks, cloth diaper covers, shorties, longies, hats, baby moccasin shoes, leg warmers, and more. (Shown Below)
All of the items are made from high quality, organic materials.
Items range mostly from $8.00- $35.00 and are custom made to order.
Connect with Heaven & Hand Knits to get your hands on these amazing products!
Thanks for letting me into your world awhile,
Naturally Nicole XO