Teething toys are one of the most important toys you can ever buy for your baby. These toys help stimulate the healthier eruption of your baby’s teeth while at the same time help relieve some of the pain and discomfort your baby might experience in relation to tooth eruption. More importantly, because teething toys are, well, toys, they provide additional benefits to the optimum psychomotor and cognitive development of your baby. This is why teething toys remain one of the most common gift suggestions parents and individuals often give to their babies or the babies of an acquaintance.
Unfortunately, choosing the right kind of teething product can be downright challenging. The number of teething baby toys in the market is simply staggering, to say the least. But, fear not because we are here to provide you with the 10 best and most popular teething toys for babies.
Criteria Used in Evaluation of the Best Teething Toys
We encourage parents to do their own extensive research, since many teething toys out there do still contain some trace levels of BPA. Even some of the cooling gels and agents used on some products to aid in relief, may leak after extensive use or improper treatment. It can be a lengthy process, but your child’s health is always worth it. Also, as part of our evaluation and suggestion to parents, don’t look for a quick and easy — or cheap — fix! The more you are to do this, the more likely you are to get a product with toxins, or a product that peals and is a choking hazard. Even something like food and medical grade silicone can be deceptive.
Some research suggests simply some TLC as a form of relief to trade off extensive use of teethers. Simply holding your child, speaking to them, rocking them when fussy, or the gentle pressure of your finger in their mouth and on their gums, can be more than enough in conjunction with the teething toys. By far it will make this first transition much simpler and smoother.
Teething is a very common and at times misunderstood phase of development in a child…in much the same ways that growing pains are! Past remedies and treatments for teething ranged from parents putting whiskey on their child’s gums, to allowing them to chew on a leather strap, or a cured piece of meat! In the 70s and 80s, there was the advent of anbesol and children’s tylenol to do the trick!
Luckily, we have evolved more as a society and tend to avoid giving our children toxins as we did in the past! As with many things that have come to light, we can now see teething as an integral learning phase for both parents and children. Not only do teething toys help to alleviate gum pain, the pressure also aids in strengthening the incoming teeth….this is one of the reasons that it is so vital to find a teething toy which can also reaches the back molars as well as the front teeth coming in!
It is even shown that teething toys and pacifiers have been helpful in speech and auditory development. This all has to do with the movement and placement of the infant’s tongue. What a child has in his or her mouth effects what sounds they are able to perceive — discerning each vowel and consonant that comes in more distinctively than older children and adults.
What Determined the Most Popular In Our List
Choosing the most popular teething toy for babies is quite easy. Just look at the number of positive reviews and you should already have an idea of its popularity. Unfortunately, this is not the only thing that you need to consider. Our team of researchers also had to consider the overall safety of the materials used in the design and manufacture of the teething toy. The use of harmful chemicals in the finishing of the product is a big no-no for us. Additionally, we had to look at the overall quality of the teething toy as well as the trustworthiness of the teething toy manufacturer. More importantly, we believe, the best teething toy should be able to provide the necessary sensory and psychomotor development that babies need.
These factors have been carefully considered in each of the 10 teething toys we have included in our list. That is why we are confident that you will also agree with our 10 best and most popular teething toys for babies.
A Look at Your Baby’s Teeth
You can look at your baby’s teething as the process by which his or her very first deciduous teeth break through his or her gums. This usually occurs by the time your baby reaches 6 months old, although it is not uncommon to see babies as young as 3 months and as old as 1 year to have their very first primary, deciduous, baby, or milk tooth. What can be expected is that by 3 years of age, your baby would have already erupted 20 milk or baby teeth. During the first eruption, your baby’s first tooth will most likely appear on the lower front of his or her gums. One to 2 months later, you can expect the upper front teeth.
You may be wondering why we need to have a baby tooth only to replace them with more permanent ones. Well, it’s all about developing the oral cavity of your baby. You see, it is your baby’s milk teeth that will maintain the arch length of his or her jaw. This is crucial because it is in these same places where their permanent teeth will develop. Milk teeth serve to guide the eruption pathway of your baby’s permanent teeth. It also helps in the formation and development of the jaw bones including the jaw muscles.
But, did you know that the most important role milk teeth have to play in your baby’s development is that it serves in the development of his or her speech as well as help improve his or her smile. We as adults are often so conscious about the appearance of our teeth. Among children, this can have a significant impact as well. Moreover, their nutrition may be affected if they don’t have their milk teeth as they will have problems chewing and grinding some of their food.
Now, why do we need a teething toy? Well, remember the baby tooth will be breaking out of the gums leading to inflammation which can be manifested by soreness, swelling, and even some pain. Teething toys serve to relieve the pressure off your baby’s gums. This helps them feel a lot better during the whole teething process. And since we are talking about babies, it is often a lot better to use a teething toy that can also help develop their other senses as well as psychomotor skills. This way, we are tending to the overall development of our babies.
Still thinking of the best teething toy to give as a present to someone you know? You can use our list of the 10 most popular. You will never go wrong.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: I’m concerned about products that are made in China for my child, what should I do?
A: We suggest that you do extensive research on each product before you buy it! The concern is understandable, since most plastics often still have trace amounts of toxins. There are many products that aren’t made in China, as well as silicone alternatives to plastic; and, also Organic Rubber materials.
Q: How safe is it to put some these products in the freezer or refrigerator?
A: All of them are pretty safe for refrigeration…We don’t suggest freezing of products unless the manufacturer specifically says that it is safe! Most of the materials handle pretty well and temperatures below freezing. Unfortunately, in the case of some gel cooling agents, at low temperatures they can cause the plastic to crack and leak gel out of the product. There’s also the risk of gum damage from placing an extremely hard or ice cold object in a child’s mouth.
Q: What is the best way to clean these products without destroying them in the process?
A: You’ve probably read how many of these products are dishwasher safe….only to find out through experience — your’s or someone else’s — that this isn’t the case! The best bet is to not go too crazy on the cleaning. Use discretion. After each use that you feel it is needed, simply soak the product in the sink with some soap and warm water for one hour, lightly scrub, then rinse off and air dry.
Q: What do I do when teethers stimulate excessive drooling?
A: The excessive drooling is normal at this phase of your child getting their first teeth in. If anything, simply limit the amount of time that your child keeps it in his or her mouth. Time with the teething toy should be alternated with play time and parent child bonding. One alternative when it is time to break up the routine while the child may still be in some discomfort is to offer your finger for your child to suck or gnaw on, as well.
Q: Is it safe to use some of the more traditional methods for teething?
A: I think that it’s best to get advice from your pediatrician or pediatric dentist where this is concerned! There are still a number of traditional teething toys on the market these days — both made of wood, rubber and leather. While there might be less attendant risk factors that plastic and silicone products have, they do have their own drawbacks.
Q: Are there any long-term benefits to teething toys?
A: They pretty much develop a sense of autonomy in your child when it comes to causality, thereby getting a better understanding of their bodies early on. When a pain such as teething occurs and they’re offered a tool to help relieve that, a neural pathway is constructed in the brain — a solution to their problem has been formulated that is literally within their grasp.
- Why Teething Toys Are Needed & How They Work , Online Article, ,
- Teething toys play a role in how babies learn sounds, Online Article, ,
- Separating Fact from Fiction in Pediatric Medicine: Infant Teething, Online Article, ,
- Babies need a break from teething toys to better learn sounds, study finds, Online Article, ,
- The Truth About Teething Part II: Remedies and Realities , Online Article, ,