Babies are a little safer today as Hyland's homeopathic teething tablets have finally been recalled by their manufacturer, Standard Homeopathic Company (1).
It has been a long road to get to this point, with pressure for the recall coming primarily, from the FDA.
Last September, the FDA issued a news release cautioning that homeopathic teething tablets and gels may be harmful to babies and children, and issued a strong recommendation to not use them. This action was taken in response to reports of the teething products causing the illnesses of hundreds of infants and deaths of approximately ten babies. The move prompted some pharmacies to remove them from their shelves, which is great, except the bottles shouldn't have been there in the first place. Pharmacies are not supposed to sell witchcraft.
Another announcement, one month later, in the form of an open letter on Hyland's website, declared that they would stop producing the teething tablets. And it's a good thing that they did.
Earlier this year, the FDA released results from their testing that there were variable amounts of the toxic compound belladonna in the teething products (1,2).
The last straw was a FDA’s formal recall request from the FDA, a strong letter written to the company. Now, finally, all lots of both the Hyland’s Baby Teething Tablets and Hyland’s Baby Nighttime Teething Tablets are being recalled.
This recall not only means the removal of one more homeopathic product that will no longer be found (and did not belong in the first place) on the shelves of pharmacies and grocery stores - tricking well intentioned parents who want nothing more than to help their babies who are suffering with teething pain. It also means that the 'believers' in these teething tablets will have to think a little harder, before defending this product. Every article that I have written on this topic has resulted in many comments from people defending Hyland's and homeopathy, while also citing the lack of recall as evidence of the products' safety. Well, the buck stops here. The product is not safe and is now recalled. End of story.
Consumers with questions regarding this recall can contact Standard Homeopathic Company by calling 1-800-991-3376 (Monday-Friday 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pacific Time). Also, if you think that you have experienced any problems that may be related to taking or using this drug product, contact the
For more on this topic, read our coverage from this past year.
(1) Had Hyland's tablets "really" been homeopathic in the strict sense of the word, they could not have possibly harmed anyone, baby or not. The essence of homeopathy—infinite dilution—guarantees that the product cannot possibly harm anyone. Or help them.
(2) Belladonna comes from the aptly-named Deadly Nightshade plant. Some of the chemicals found in the plant are highly toxic alkaloids, such as scopolamine and hyoscyamine. A few berries from the plant can be fatal.