Nihama Toys – Natural and Handmade Teething Toys

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With my first daughter Tessa, I had a long drawn out battle of trying to discern if she was just being fussy, or if she was actually teething. There was the occasional bouts of drool. The inexplicable frenzies of needing to chew on anything and everything. Then there was the sawing of toys against her gums while freaking the $#%^ out. Ya know, the usual odd baby stuff. This battle went on for OVER A YEAR before she finally popped out her first baby tooth.  
I made the silly mistake of assuming that baby Thyme would be exactly like her sister, and we would have upwards of a year to invest in new teething toys. Uh, WRONG. Thymes first tooth made its appearance at four months, and she has steadily been sprouting new pearly whites ever since.
I discovered with Tessa that I prefer my little ones to be cutting their gums on natural, safe teethers. You want to know why? OF COURSE YOU DO! Ahem…
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Why Your Choice of Teething Toys Is Important

I have actually posted most of this on my blog before, when I was a new mommy to Tessa. But it all bears repeating! Babies, by nature, put everything in their mouths. EVERYTHING. Toys, blankets, your shirt, your hair, the cat. Nothing is safe from the curious taste buds of a newly hatched human.
But a teething baby? Maximize the oral fixation by, like, a trillion. When babies are teething, anything is fair game when it comes to soothing their aching gums. Not only are teething toys good for babies, they are absolutely essential. Your child NEEDS something to ease their pain and assist their gums in doing something big and scary that they have never done before.. rip open to grow a new tooth! If you don’t provide your baby with a teething toy, they’ll find something that will act in that role. (And your cat / iPhone / nipple may not like that.)
So when it comes to designating a “put this in your mouth and nom on it” toy, I think it goes without saying that choosing a natural, safe and toxin-free product is important.

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The Problem With Plastics

During the first few years of life, when babies’ cells continue to undergo “programming,” exposure to certain toxic chemicals can disrupt the delicate process. The biggest toxic culprit to infants health is Bisphenol A, better known as BPA. (Which, if you read my blog regularly, you know I love to rail against from time to time.)
BPA is a compound in hard, clear polycarbonate plastics that mimics the effects of estrogen in children (and adults!) and has raised particular concern because it interferes with hormone levels and cell signaling systems. BPA’s have the potential to cause permanent and lasting damage to infants health.
Many teethers have BPAs in them, and while the number is rapidly declining given all the recent publicity about them, it’s better to play it safe and avoid using plastic when it comes to mouth-specific items for your baby (teethers, pacifiers, nipples, etc.).
Latex teethers are also no-no’s, known to leak low levels of nitrosamines, a known carcinogen. Still other teething toys are made with diisononyl phthalate (DINP) or phthalate esters, which can be released during sterilization.
Silicone and 100% rubber are safe and toxin-free options for your baby’s delicate mouth, and excellent choices for nipples and pacifiers, but tend to be too soft and malleable for teething toys. So this leaves us.. wooden teethers!
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The Benefits of Wooden Teethers

Wood that is either completely unfinished or finished with non-toxic substances such as water based, oil based or beeswax finishes are much safer than plastic toys – which often contain chemicals that leech out.
Additionally, studies are showing that some hardwoods have natural antibacterial properties. In a 2002 study comparing the hygienic aspects of wood and polyethylene cutting boards regarding food contaminations, Gehrig, Schnell, Zürcher and Kucera discovered that cutting boards made of wood (maple, beech and oak) were far more resistant to bacterial contamination than plastic polyethylene. (This is always a bonus when it comes to an object intended for your child’s mouth!)
Wood is also far more durable than plastics. Well constructed wooden toys, particularly those that are handmade, last a very long time. Depending on the quality of your child’s chomping, you could even keep a wooden teether around for child #2! (Though they are so affordable, buying new ones won’t exactly break the bank!)
Finally wood is porous and absorbent, so you have the option of infusing the teether with natural numbing (and child safe!) oils, like clove oil, for really horrid teething pain.

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About The Nihama Teethers

All Nihama (short for Natural Hand Made) teethers are made by Yana Ladyzhenskaya, mother of four. During her pregnancies, Yana always found herself with a lot of spare time on her hands, so she started some new hobbies. With her children as inspiration, she began experimenting with handmade toys, and as the items grew in number, more and more people started asking for some.
Several years later Yana officially introduced her latest collection of handmade teething toys, nursing necklaces and bracelets. She still makes them all by hand (and even takes special orders for custom colors!)
All the Nihama teething toys and nursing necklaces are made of beech wood and organic and natural yarns. The majority of yarns used are 100% baby cotton, organic and eco-friendly, but in some cases organic cotton yarns with wild silk and kapok are used too.
Nihama teethers are ideal for use with wraps, carriers and slings, and designed to help in developing motor skills while alleviating teething pain!

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My Thoughts on the Teethers

I have to say, I am extremely impressed with the quality of these teething toys. They look phenomenal and exceptionally well-built. Even with rough handling and rigorous chewing, the wood and yarn elements are safe for children and easy to wash.
The hand carved beads and hoops are in creative designs with a whimsical feel that is visually stimulating for little ones, and are the perfect size for little fingers to grasp. The yarn covered beads provide a great surface for biting and grabbing, and the silky smooth hard wood gives a good contract in textures from tiny teeth!
These toys are truly unique, beautiful and wonderfully hand crafted functional works of art. Tessa, who is over her teething period at 2 ½ years old, fights to wear the necklace and bracelet when she sees sister wearing them! Cute, functional and stylish.. I would highly recommend!
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Learn more about Nihama Teething Toys by CLICKING HERE or visiting http://nihama.toys/

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Gingi Freeman
Gingi Freeman
Gingi is a photographer, cosplayer, amateur chef, crazy cat lady, anime otaku, bookworm, generic geek, world traveler, conservative Christian, homeschooler, devoted military wife and stay at home new mother of two little girls.

Gingi blogs about anything and everything that is relevant to being a supermom, stay at home wife, homeschooler and geek girl! You can contact her at gingifreeman@gmail.com or via the contact form on her website at www.domesticgeekgirl.com

Gingi Freeman

Gingi is a photographer, cosplayer, amateur chef, crazy cat lady, anime otaku, bookworm, generic geek, world traveler, conservative Christian, homeschooler, devoted military wife and stay at home new mother of two little girls. Gingi blogs about anything and everything that is relevant to being a supermom, stay at home wife, homeschooler and geek girl! You can contact her at gingifreeman@gmail.com or via the contact form on her website at www.domesticgeekgirl.com

52 thoughts on “Nihama Toys – Natural and Handmade Teething Toys

  • 26 January, 2016 at 8:26 pm
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    Beautiful, sweet spirited, and observant Thyme is a teething toy model. My precious granddaughter!

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:33 pm
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      She is getting so big, isnt she?! She was the perfect little model!

  • 26 January, 2016 at 8:57 pm
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    I think they look very pretty and are appealing. Is there any concern with putting something around the neck of a little one… that it might get caught on something? I can see the upside over plastic for sure!

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:33 pm
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      It is always a good idea to only let babies wear ANY necklaces when they are supervised. Anything around the neck can pose a choking hazard when left alone!

  • 26 January, 2016 at 9:13 pm
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    Oh that sweet baby of yours! I love teething toys like this! I am going to keep these on handy reference for my next baby shower.

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:34 pm
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      Yeah, these ones have no much character!

  • 26 January, 2016 at 9:32 pm
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    Looks great and admit we are past this stage, but will definitely share with my friends and family who still have little ones. Thanks Gingi!! 🙂

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:34 pm
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      Thanks Janine! <3

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:35 pm
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      Kisses back atcha! Glad you like!

  • 26 January, 2016 at 10:55 pm
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    Those are gorgeous teething toys! And she looks quite happy with them too.
    I love the photos very much.

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:36 pm
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      Yeah, her and sister fight over them quite a bit, lol! But Thyme loves nomming on them!

  • 26 January, 2016 at 11:46 pm
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    Agreed, these are beautifully designed and cheerful toys. Love seeing more natural choices for kids, thanks for the review.

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:38 pm
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      <3 <3 Yes, it makes me soooo happy to see more natural and healthy kids toys on the market these days! <3

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:39 pm
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      I am very much inclined to agree with you!! <3

  • 27 January, 2016 at 1:40 am
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    That’s the prettiest teether I’ve ever seen 🙂

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:39 pm
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      Right?! <3

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:39 pm
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      You too sweetie! <3

  • 27 January, 2016 at 3:39 pm
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    Wow those look so awesome. I especially like that it’s a necklace so it’s less likely to get lost. Does he ever swing it around and hit himself? That’s what I would worry about with heavy toys.

    • 27 January, 2016 at 4:42 pm
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      They are not actually all that heavy! The only thing is my older toddler doesnt like necklaces (even when she insists on wearing them) so something she yanks on them to take them off and ends up hurting her neck.. haha.. but other that that, they have a blast with them!

  • 27 January, 2016 at 5:02 pm
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    Such a fascinating post. I have a friend who collects ‘teething rings’ (everything from bone to silver, wood to plastic) and at last feel like I can talk with some authority when she next talks about her latest purchase.

    • 27 January, 2016 at 10:26 pm
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      Bone?! That is trippy! I never would have thought of that as a medium for teething toys, lol!

    • 27 January, 2016 at 10:27 pm
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      Thanks! You too sweetie!

  • 27 January, 2016 at 5:18 pm
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    I’m not even a baby but this makes me wanna have a teether of my own.

    • 27 January, 2016 at 10:28 pm
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      ROFLMAO, you are such a nut!!! I want to see that on one of your new videos! 😉

  • 27 January, 2016 at 5:46 pm
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    I love this kind of toys, so natural and genuine! ^-^
    Have a lovely day dear! :*

    • 28 January, 2016 at 4:44 pm
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      Yesss!! Natural is the way to go!

  • 27 January, 2016 at 10:28 pm
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    You too sweetie! <3

    • 28 January, 2016 at 4:44 pm
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      <3

  • 28 January, 2016 at 6:12 pm
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    Tierno el bebe con sus juguetes, tan tierno el post.
    Saludos desde El Blog de Boris Estebitan.

  • 28 January, 2016 at 8:26 pm
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    My good friend is having a baby soon and I think I found a great present for her baby shower! Great post!

    • 28 January, 2016 at 10:07 pm
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      Yay!! I am so happy to have helped!!

  • 29 January, 2016 at 7:06 pm
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    Gingi, I like the idea of wooden teething toys… I was never much into any plastic ones… my oldest only wanted a cold wet facecloth… she chewed on them all day long. I must have owned 40-50 and washed them all the time… my youngest did the same thing… The wooden ones would have been kind of cool though… awesome. I hope you and your family are have a great weekend xox

    • 29 January, 2016 at 10:23 pm
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      LOL, how funny!! Its interesting how kids are different in what they prefer.. my oldest loved pacifiers, and my littlest HATES them…

    • 31 January, 2016 at 10:02 pm
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      I know, I love taking pictures of my little model baby!! <3

    • 31 January, 2016 at 10:02 pm
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      Thanks Lenya! <3

    • 31 January, 2016 at 10:03 pm
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      No problem!!! <3

    • 31 January, 2016 at 10:05 pm
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      You too hon!

  • 1 February, 2016 at 9:52 pm
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    I love wooden teethers but I’ve never seen anything quite as gorgeous as this.

    Wonderful! I’ll have to remember as a shower gift,

    Thanks for sharing (and for linking up to the #SHINEbloghop).

    Wishing you a lovely day.
    xoxo

    PS – The photos… awwww – so sweet!

    • 2 February, 2016 at 6:46 pm
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      Of course!! Thanks for stopping by my blog! <3

  • 2 February, 2016 at 5:19 pm
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    looks like a great natural way for the little ones to teeth on. such cute pics 🙂

    • 2 February, 2016 at 6:46 pm
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      Thank you Sue!! <3

  • 5 February, 2016 at 1:03 am
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    What beautiful teethers! My grandchildren wear amber necklaces, have you heard anything about them? Thank you for popping over to my blog, I haven’t been very good at visiting others for the last few months but you reminded me I much I enjoy your blog x

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