Teething gels to be sold in pharmacies only
Parents and caregivers are being advised products containing Lidocaine used for teething in babies and children will be sold only in pharmacies from 2019.
Pharmacists are best placed to provide guidance and support when babies and children are teething or if there are concerns about babies’ health, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) said today.
These medicines should only be used when non-medicinal options do not provide necessary relief. This advice follows a review which also recommended that the administration instructions and safety warnings should be updated.
The MHRA review concluded there is a lack of evidence of benefit to using products containing lidocaine for teething before non-medicinal options. Our evidence of any risk associated with these products is very small given the wide usage of these medicines. A pharmacist or healthcare professional can provide appropriate guidance.
Teething is a natural process and lidocaine containing teething products such as teething gels should only be used as a second line of treatment after discussion with and guidance of a healthcare professional.
Dr Sarah Branch, Deputy Director of MHRA’s Vigilance and Risk Management of Medicines (VRMM) Division said: 'Our review showed there is a lack of evidence of benefit to using teething gels. To help babies and children with teething, parents and caregivers should try non-medicine options such as rubbing or massaging the gums or a teething ring.
'We want to make sure you get the right information about teething. If your child continues to have problems with teething, talk to your pharmacist or healthcare professional about the best options.
'If you suspect that your child has experienced a side effect to a medicine, please report this to us through our Yellow Card Scheme.'
Author: Julie Bissett