On Those Homeopathic Teething Products…

teethingOctober started with a new warning from the FDA: Don’t use homeopathic teething tablets and gels According to the New York Times,

The F.D.A. issued a similar warning in 2010, saying that the products contain “inconsistent amounts” of belladonna, a plant compound that can be dangerous at high doses. At that time, Hyland’s recalled its products, changed the formula and then began selling them again in 2011.

The current F.D.A. warning does not mention belladonna or other specific components of the products as posing health risks. Hyland’s statement said that the amount of belladonna in the product is two-trillionths of a gram per tablet and that “a child would have to eat multiple bottles at once to experience the first side effect of belladonna, which is typically dry mouth.”

Of course, if there’s any belladonna – or other medicament – in the remedy at all, can it really be considered “homeopathic”?

Sure, you typically hear that a homeopathic remedy contains “very tiny doses of natural substances,” as an article in Popular Science recently put it. But that’s incorrect.

Homeopathy is a form of energy medicine. Unlike a drug, which delivers molecules that force a desired physical reaction (and undesired ones – a/k/a “side effects” – as well), a homeopathic preparation delivers information that’s been energetically transmitted to the carrier substance. As Dr. Christopher Fabricius explains in his excellent primer on homeopathy,

You can test a homeopathic remedy again and again; molecularly, you’ll find only the carrier substance. Such a remedy isn’t made by putting any physical substance into water or other medium. Rather, the structure of the medium is changed and impressed with information to deliver to the subtle, organizing energetic fields that wisely and sentiently govern all life processes down to the cells and extracellular matrix (biological terrain). That structure is distinct, as many studies have shown….

It’s the information that matters.

With a homeopathic, the material component is merely a carrier of therapeutic information. The carrier is not the remedy itself – just as a book is not the information it contains. Both are physical delivery systems for information. Through paper, ink and glue, the book conveys its message; through water, SI card or other physical substance, the homeopathic conveys its own.

What that information does or becomes happens within the individual receiving it.

There are, as we’ve noted before, some excellent, high quality homeoapthics that can help ease the discomfort of teething: Body Mend and Inflammation, both from BioEnergetics. But they’re not exactly necessary. Chilled teething rings and gently massaging your infant’s gums may be enough.

But the fact that there are good remedies available should you want them points to the larger lesson this recent news suggests – one we’ve returned to time and again on this blog with respect to supplements in particular: quality matters. Buying over-the-counter can sometimes be a bit of a crap shoot. By consulting a biological dentist, naturopath, or other integrative practitioner, you can get guidance not only to quality products but products that are appropriate for the condition you seek help with, removing the guess-work.

Image by Daniel Schwen, via Wikimedia Commons

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A humanistic, holistic dental practice in Northern California, providing integrative, biological, mercury-free dentistry
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