The Food and Drug administration says teething should not be treated with homeopathic remedies or over the counter medications rubbed on the gums.
The FDA says benzocaine is a local anesthetic that is an active ingredient in several over the counter oral health care products.
An agency spokesperson says these products are not for use for treating sore gums due to teething because they wash out of a baby’s mouth within minutes.
Using these products can lead to a serious and sometimes fatal condition where the oxygen-carrying capacity of red blood cells is greatly reduced.
If your child is having teething pain, the FDA says to try massaging their gums with your finger or give your child a teething ring made of firm rubber to chew on.
Also make sure the teething ring is not frozen because if the object is too hard it can hurt your child’s gums.
The FDA says adults may also have problems when using benzocaine or other local anesthetics.
They advise speaking with your doctor before using them especially if you have heart disease, are elderly, a smoker or have breathing problems such as asthma or emphysema.