Just when you'd stashed all those baby toys away, your toddler starts biting things again. Those baby teeth do a lot more damage than gums alone ever could, and you can see the proof all over crib rail. The days of everything going in the mouth may be over, but your little one still needs to soothe sore gums. Plenty of teeth erupt in the second year, including those painful two-year molars. Frozen teething toys soothe sore gums, not to mention saving your furniture.
Choosing Safe Teethers
Choose a teether that's not only effective, but also safe. Look for EVA and TPU, and avoid soft plastic teethers made with toxic PVC and phthalates. Clear hard plastic teethers are also a dicey choice, as they may be made using BPA or BPS, which can affect your little one's reproductive system. Organic cotton and stainless steel also work great in teethers meant to be frozen.
Water-Filled Plastic Teethers
Water or gel-filled teething rings will help save the coffee table. They freeze easily, and provide a soothing and solid surface for your teether to get her gums into. A new EVA plastic water-filled teether is a great staple to have on hand to soothe sore gums. Try a few different shapes with different textures and see which ones your toddler likes best. Keep a few of these in the freezer and toss them if you see any signs that they've sprung a leak. Wash frequently before re-icing to keep germs at bay as well.
Organic Cotton Teething Toys
Organic cotton teethers and toys are a green mama's dream come true. High-quality ones are free of heavy metal dyes and flame retardant. The soft feeling of the cloth is a great alternative to plastic. Plus, these can usually be thrown into the washing machine to get the yuckies out. To freeze, simply wet the edges and freeze the whole thing. Your toddler will appreciate the difference in temperature and may love the texture the cotton provides.
Stainless Steel Teething Toys
Does your toddler still try to gnaw on spoons and keys? Teething toys that contain stainless steel are a better option. Regular keys may contain lead, so make sure to use only safe toys meant for putting in a baby's mouth. Then hand them over to your toddler for a cool treat. The metal alone feels super-cool on painful gums, but you can also dip parts of them into ice or ice water to let them cool when you're on the go, at a restaurant or over at a girlfriend's house for dinner.