Pacifiers – also known as a paci, a nuk, a binky, a dummy. They are use all over the world to “pacify” babies, help them sleep, keep them relatively quiet, comfort them, and provide an outlet for the instinctive sucking that babies crave. They can be a mom’s best friend (allowing for a good night’s sleep) or her worst enemy (when her 5 year old won’t leave the house without one). Some moms think giving a baby an artificial nipple is not a good idea and some moms never give it any thought. But do either of them think about whether or not that pacifier is safe for baby’s physical health? They might be concerned about pacifiers as a potential choking hazard but until recently many moms never thought about a hidden danger lurking in a baby’s pacifier. The same is true of teethers. There are tons of them on the market to comfort and soothe babies, perhaps making teething a bit easier to handle for mom and baby. But are they safe?
Unfortunately, many conventional teethers and pacifiers contain Bishpenol A or BPA. I have addressed the problems associated with this synthetic hormone used to make plastic on several other occasions. I love to provide parents with information about alternatives that are non toxic and safe for baby. There is just no need to buy toxic baby products anymore. For reference you should check out these complimentary articles by yours truly:
Unlike some of the articles above I really do not have much personal experience with the teethers and pacifiers mentioned below because I do not have a child that uses them. I have gotten to see and feel most of them but that is quite different from giving them a road test. BUT unlike baby bottles and sippy cups there is not much to say in way of reviews so here goes. This is a list of safe (bpa free) pacifiers and teethers. This list only represents the ones I know about…there could be others, and if you know of one make sure to leave a comment below!
Natursutten Pacifiers – The only all natural organic pacifier and my top pick! They are made from pure natural rubber from the tree Hevea brasiliensi. These pacifiers are softer than silicone and extremely hygienic, molded in one piece, and there are no joints or cracks where dirt and bacteria can accumulate. And of course they are free of all the nasty stuff you would never consciously want to put into your baby’s mouth, ie artificial colors, chemical softeners, BPA, parabens, PVC and phthalates. They are pretty cute too. :) See below for Natursutten teethers.
Hevea Star & Moon Orthodontic Pacifier – This is another natural rubber, latex pacifier option. The Hevea pacifier is made of 100% pure natural rubber from the rubber tree Hevea brasiliensis. The hygienic one piece design leaves no joints, cracks or edges. Also the soft material and ergonomic shape is soft and gentle against baby’s face. Sustainably produced and packaged in recycled and biodegradable materials.
Raz-Berry Pacifier – 100% medical grade silicone and VERY cute. They are shaped like a raspberry. The bumpy texture sooths baby’s gums. This one seems to be quite popular among parents.
Born Free is a BPA free company that offers baby bottle and sippy cups and just recently introduced a new line of BPA free orthodontic pacifiers for day time and night time use.
Playtex Baby Binky Most Like Mother One-Piece Silicone Pacifier- This is a durable one-piece, medical grade silicone pacifier. It features a nipple designed to simulate the shape of mother’s breast during breastfeeding, to satisfy baby’s sucking reflex. One thing I found a bit bizarre though about these pacifiers is the fact that they are “scented”.
Cornstarch Teethers from Green Sprouts – Biodegradable! Made from Cornstarch Green Sprouts is a company committed to providing non-toxic products for your baby and toddler. The Green Sprouts Feeding line contains no BPA, PVC, Lead, or Phthalates. Check out their hand teether and their candy teether.
First Years Soothie Silicone Pacifier – Sized and shaped for baby’s developing mouth, made of latex-free, hospital grade silicone, and they have a durable, one-piece construction. You can get them in pink or a pretty teal color. These are also the pacifiers you get on the adorable Wubbanubs, which are basically small stuffed animals attached to the pacifier so that the pacifier is less likely to fall out or be spit out accidentally.
Sophie the Giraffe Teether- This is the new rage in teethers…Sophie the Giraffe….and our top pick! It is hand made in the French Alps with natural rubber and non-toxic paint. Born in 1961, her success is legendary in France as the # 1 toy for baby. Sophie stands 7″ tall, and is sure to become your baby’s favorite toy. It is absolutely adorable and I have heard it is especially good for plane rides since there is no liquid in it.
Chan Pie Gnon – I also really like this teether too! It is made by the same company that makes Sophie. Chan Pie Gnon comes from the French word champignon, which means mushroom. Chan (blue), Pie (pink), and Gnon (green) are adorably mushroom-shaped soft chew toys. They are proudly handmade in the French Alps with the finest rubber (phthalate-free) and food quality paints.
Natursutten BPA Free Fish Teether – These teething rings are filled with purified sterilized water, free of any chemicals. The rings themselves are made from EVAtane, a material also used for medical products, free of BPA, phthalates and any chemical softeners.
Hevea Panda Teether – The same company that makes the rubber latex pacy above also makes a 100% Natural Rubber (free from phthalates, colours, PVC & EVAtane, silicone & BPA ).
See also Amber Teething Necklaces for a 100% natural, non-plastic option.
LeapFrog Baby Lilypad Vibrating Teether- This teether is pretty attractive I think. It is a vibrating teether with a colorful lilypad filled with water and character images inside along with colorful characters. I am 30 and I want it. :)
Sassy Buzz n’ Bites teether- This little butterfly is such a fun and colorful way to soothe baby’s sore gums AND to promote the development of the senses. This teether offers a variety of textures for your baby to explore, creating an increased awareness of the lips or fingers. Plus, one of the butterfly’s wings vibrates gently as baby chews on it. Can be chilled in refrigerator for a cooling sensation.
Sassy Coolin’ Teether- Cool’in teethers inspire the sense of taste. Babies will have fun exploring the various textures, and shapes while teething. They can also be put in the refrigerator. So far I have seen a several animal shapes too…a turtle, a snail, and a bear.
Sassy Chilly Dilly Daisy- This teether helps develop your baby’s communication skills by creating an awareness of lips and tongue. Water-filled petals can be refrigerated to help soothe aching gums while gripping and textured petals entertain fingers and hands. Performs double duty with a rattle in the center section. This is one cute teether.
Luv n’ Care Icy Bite Teether- The IcyBite teether/soother provides a cool textured surface for baby to bite and teethe on during teething periods. It soothes and stimulates sore gums safely. Colorful shapes are easy for baby to hold and sized for maximum effectiveness as a teether and soother. This teether is filled with non-toxic purICE, can be placed in the freezer and will remain soft to safely soothe baby’s sore gums.
You may notice some big brand names aboveSassy, Nuby, Gerber, etc. While they do offer some safe alternatives like the one I mention above they also have teethers and pacifiers in their lineup that are NOT safe so do your homework and make sure only buy the ones that have no BPA or other harmful chemicals and byproducts.
Monday, February 11th, 2008