Disclaimer: I am not a doctor nor do I claim to be one. I am aware that these necklaces are not FDA approved. Obviously artisan hippies do not have enough money to remotely begin the approval process that most large drug companies do. I am also aware that some believe them to be nothing more than magic amulets. If you're not going to say anything nice in the comment section below, please click the "x" in your browsing window. I simply turned to the trusty internet and twitter moms who have gone before me to provide research and evidence regarding the amber teething necklace and after several weeks of using one? I am a believer. So there. I did not receive free product nor financial compensation for this post. All opinions expressed below are entirely my own.
At first, I wasn't a believer. I would see picture after picture after picture of Internet babies wearing these "hippie" necklaces and I would immediately doubt their efficacy. I couldn't fathom how something worn on the skin would alleviate the pain from teething transforming once irritable monstrous babies into delightful happy little humans.
And then my second son started teething. It was as if overnight he went from a bubbly mellow little fellow to a drooling cranky disaster baby. He was six months old at the time and I was thisclose to losing my mind. As a last resort I jumped online at the encouragement of a friend and ordered him an amber teething necklace.
When it came down to it, I ordered him the most "manly" one I could find. It turned out to be the cognac Baltic amber necklace. Not a day goes by that someone doesn't make fun of his necklace but it's usually around the time that they start asking where his patchouli stick is that I invite them to sleep over our house on a day that I decide he doesn't need to wear his necklace. Miraculously they decline.
A few weeks ago I had removed his necklace during bath time and had absentmindedly forgotten to put it back on once he was in his jammies. Tucked safely away in the guest bathroom medicine cabinet, a couple of days went by before I even remembered it was in there. It was during those two days that I wanted to jump ship on life.
Maclane was suddenly having difficultly soothing himself to sleep at night and once asleep, he was waking much more than normal. During his waking hours he was the clingiest baby I had ever laid eyes on, often refusing to be anywhere other than my arms.
And that's when it hit me like a ton of bricks. He wasn't wearing his necklace. Could it be? Could that tiny little accessory really work that well? I immediately ran upstairs and grabbed the necklace, replacing it around his neck. Within an hour I saw a difference. I couldn't believe it.
They work. They really, really work. Here I am, nearly four and a half weeks later and I wanted to tell you these "hippie" amber teething necklaces really work.
During these last several weeks I've received tons of questions on Mac's teething necklace so I figured I would write up a post about our experience and answer some of the more popular questions that I've received.
1. Which is better Baltic amber or Hazelwood?
From what I've learned, Baltic amber tends to last longer and therefore you should choose that one. Provided that you do not break the breads or get them goop-ed up with lotions, shampoos, etc. However, the baltic healing properties tend to be "acidic" in nature so if your baby has issues with acid reflux or eczema, then Hazelwood is a better choice.
2. How does it work?
YOU DO NOT PUT THIS NECKLACE IN YOUR BABY'S MOUTH. I feel like this needs to be said because for the longest time whenever I heard "teething necklace" I assumed it was something the baby chewed on. This is NOT that kind of necklace. When amber is worn, it warms when in contact with the skin. It is through this warming that it begins to release it's therapeutic healing properties.
3. Does he wear it all the time? Is it safe to sleep in?
Maclane wears his necklace all the time with the exception of baths. It is not recommended that babies sleep in their necklaces or wear them when unsupervised as they can be a strangulation hazard. For the first few weeks I would not let Maclane sleep with his necklace on. Some moms suggested that I wrap it around his ankle and others that I spoke with said they left it on. Once Maclane became used to wearing his well-fitting necklace and I noticed that it so often remained beneath the collar of his pajamas, I felt safe letting him wear it to bed at night. This is a personal decision. Please, please do your research on this and only do what you feel comfortable doing. Not once in our experience using this necklace has Maclane grabbed at it, let alone tried to put it in his mouth. In fact, properly fitting necklaces shouldn't be able to reach the baby's mouth.
4. What's with all of the different colors?
Supposedly the lighter color amber necklaces are "stronger" and therefore used to treat more "chronic" pain issues. Again, I was mostly concerned with my child wearing a "manly" necklace and therefore went with the cognac, a slightly darker amber.
Do your research. Talk with other moms. Make your own informed decisions. If you're interested in purchasing a similar Baltic amber teething necklace, I've included the link below to the one that Maclane wears. Feel free to email me with any questions!