According to CNN, the FDA claims at least 10 Children’s deaths (and 400 “adverse events”) may be linked to ingredients used in homeopathic teething tablets, such as Hylands. Chances are you have some in your medicine kit from your baby shower, or from a previous child’s teething. Homeopathic remedies have been used for generations, so what’s the deal? We thought that this article from contributor and lawyer Laurence Banville would be of help in understanding the FDA’s warning against using these tablets.
The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), on October 23, 2010, first issued a warning for consumers to discard the teething tablets sold by Hyland, which prompted the manufacturer to recall this product from stores. In another media release issued on September 30, 2016, the FDA once again warned against the risk of using these tablets and gels owing to further reports of side effects in children.
The FDA issued this warning because of the possible risk caused to children because of Hyland’s Teething Tablets. The analysis undertaken by the authority found that the tablets comprised of fluctuating quantities of belladonna, which is considered to be a toxic ingredient. According to TheProductLawyers.com, this is not the first time homeopathic manufacturers have been given warning about their teething tablets and gels. After receiving reports of serious consequences in children taking this product, the FDA has urged parents to stop medicating their children with it.
What is Belladonna?
Belladonna is a plant with toxic leaves and berries and has been used as both a medicine and poison over the years. The anticholinergic chemicals present in belladonna disrupt a child’s nervous system while blocking circulation and digestion. In some cases, poisoning from belladonna can prove to be deadly. These belladonna alkaloids could result in symptoms like:
- Faster heart rate
- Increase in body temperature
- Dry mouth and skin
- Urinary problems
- Flushed skin
- Dilated pupils and sleepiness
- Breathing difficulty
- Muscle weaknesses
Belladonna in large amounts is known to have harmful effects in people and was commonly used in the past as a poison. The FDA has confirmed that they have not evaluated the Teething Tablets for efficacy and safety. They are also unaware of any clinical benefits brought to children by this product.
The biggest issue according to the FDA was inconsistent amounts of belladonna in the products, which meant that some had more than others. However, according to the manufacturer, children would have to take relatively larger doses to experience any side effects. The FDA also claimed that children may have consumed too many teething tablets because the product was available in a tubes and cardboard boxes that children can open easily.
What To Do If You Experience Harm From Using These Teething Tablets
If you have used Hyland’s Teething Tablets or gels and have noticed any of these symptoms in your child, don’t wait. Take him or her to a health care professional immediately for a thorough assessment.
The faster you act, the less chances your child will suffer from some ill-effects, so prompt action is always recommended to keep your child as healthy as possible. Even the slightest symptom should be treated immediately to prevent any long-term effects.
After the latest warning from the FDA, Hyland has discontinued its products in the market. Major retailers like CVS and Walgreens have pulled these products from their shelves. Consumers concerned for their children’s safety can contact the homeopathic company for instructions on getting a refund for the product.
Manage Teething In Children Without Medication
According to the FDA, no prescription tablets or over-the-counter medicines are necessary to control teething. The ongoing investigation to examine the relationship between child injuries and these teething tablets will continue. Many experts recommend alternative ways to manage teething instead of medication. Some management strategies include:
- Gentle gum massages using your fingers
- Chilled teething rings for chewing
- Applying a cool washcloth along the gums
Parents should ideally avoid giving these homeopathic teething tablets and seek safer alternatives to ensure that their children remain happy and healthy.
Taking Legal Action For Adverse Effects
Several class action lawsuits have already been filed against the manufacturer for misleading consumers about the safety of these homeopathic products. Parents whose children have been affected adversely by the tablets or gels may consider taking legal action and should consult with qualified attorneys to discuss the claim.
The FDA is presently studying the issue through a variety of means, including product sample tests. The FDA will continue to issue alerts to the public regarding Hyland Teething Tablets and other associated products.
Laurence Banville Esq. is the managing partner and face of The Product Lawyers. Laurence is licensed to practice law in the state of New York. Originally from Ireland, Banville moved to the United States of America where he worked at law firms, refining his litigation and brief writing crafts. He is also the recipient of the Irish Legal 100 and the Top 40 Under 40 awards.