Jan. 17, 2017 -- Several parents have reported finding mold inside a popular teething toy called Sophie the Giraffe.
The mold could pose long-term health risks to infants, Dr. Sujartha Ramamurthy, of Doctors2You in Fort Myers, Fla., told NBC News.
"This is huge wake-up call for parents," said Ramamurthy, who explained that moisture from a baby's drool can remain in the toy and cause mold to grow. Exposure to the mold could lead to future health complications.
"It could develop later on into asthma or upper respiratory issues," Ramamurthy told NBC News.
Washing the teething toy could also trigger mold growth. The toy's maker said consumers should avoid getting water into the product. Rather than submerging it, clean the surface with a damp cloth.
Parents with concerns about their child's teethers should throw them away, Ramamurthy told NBC News.