Teething, one of the many milestones parents look forward to with their babies. Okay for the most part, I’m sure most do, but I was being a little facticious. I’m sure you’ve gone throughor heard about the trials and tribulations of teething. I have heard so mnay horror stories over the years when it comes to teething that its not even funny. Everything from a flaming poop, sleepless, none stop crying, irritable baby to those that run fevers and sleep all the time! So you really never know what to expect from your baby, because every kid is different. I’ve also heard stories from parents that say their child was never phased much by teething. I consider them very fortunate!
My son who will be 5 months on Saturday has been teething for a while now. I’d say he starting teething, or rather showing signs of it around 3-3 1/2 months. The hands constantly in the mouth and excess saliva were dead giveaways. So yes, along with growth spruts and sleep regression, he’s in full-mode teething. However, we have yet to see any little chompers breaking through…any day now!
Its so funny when you think about teething and putting it in perspective, yet its so hard to. Its a part of our lives that is so minute compared to all the other growing and developing we do as humans. I remember saying to my “Geez, is it that hard to grow teeth? “I sure don’t remember it being this hard when I grew mines.” Well that’s because my poor parents had to deal with it when I was a baby, and as a child I was so busy playing, going to school, growing, and doing all the things that typical kids do growing up to really notice. We I started to loose my baby teeth as a child, it was exciting. The only pain was sometimes, the tooth falling out and other times it breaking through, which would only last for a day or two. Once that day or two had passed, it was back to business. Again, as a kid I was all over the place, so loosing a tooth was far from something to put me out of commission.
When it comes to babies, its a bit different. For one, their little bodies are going through so much already, and they can’t communicate to tell you what’s wrong. You, as a parent or caregiver can’t communicate back and make the baby understand what’s going on. This is why its equally as frustrating for both parties. You can soothe with cuddling, nursing, and even certain toys made to help with teething, but a part of knowing that everything will be okay for most people, is understanding whatis going on. Its also knowing that it is temporary and will have an awesome result when its all over.
I have comprised a few tips and tricks to deal with teething. I have also come across some alternative methods to ease teething pain as I endure this wonderful journey of it with my son, and wanted to share them with you. Hopefully, you (as well as myself) will find some relief in some of these, but only time will tell! In the meantime, here’s what I’ve come up with:
A timeline is a great way to prepare, keep track, and learn more about teething in babies. I found this really good one on Babycenter. It takes you all the way from baby to big kid (12 years of age) when it comes to teething. Of course the timeline is suggested, because some kids will do things earlier or later than what’s stated on it. Nonetheless, its a good guide to go by, so you atleast know what to possibly expect next after to hit one teething milestone.
The use of a teething chart is another great way to keep track of your child’s teeth as they come in as well.
This cute teething chart can be downloaded from UrbanMommies.com
to Ease Teething Pain
Oral Treatments – I have yet to use this method, as my son does have any teeth that are breaking through yet.
Baby Orajel Naturals – This teething pain gel is a homeopathic option that contains chamomile. It is free of benzocaine, dyes, and parabens.
Hyland’s Teething Tablets – These teething tablets are very small and dissolve in your baby’s mouth very quickly. They are natural and contain no artificial flavors, dyes, or parabens. They can work well in combination with a cold remedy treatment option.
Boiron’s Camilia – A safe and natural liquid solution that relieves painful gums and irritability of teething. The product is benozocaine free and can be used on children ages 1 month and up.
Cold options – I have used cold options, but my son would rather nibble on my husband’s & I’s fingers, and anything else within his reach.
Used to reduce inflamed gums and provide teething relief.
- Rub ice or a cold wash cloth along your child’s gums
- Give your child a frozen waffle or bagel to chew on (after wheat is introduced to avoid a possible allergy)
- Frozen teething rings
- Sassy Terry Teethers – These fruit shaped teethers are made from terry cloth and are designed to be wet and then put into the freezer
- Kidsme Food Feeder – BPA-free textured silicone sack that replaces the traditional mesh feeders, but is much easier to clean; place frozen fruit or ice cubes in the sack to soothe teething pain.
Baltic Amber Necklaces – I have not used this method, but it seems to be pretty popular. I’ve both seen, read, and heard a bit about this Amber necklaces.
Baltic amber necklaces have become a very popular option to help ease teething pain, along with many other ailments. Amber has been shown to have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce pain and swollen gums. The natural oils in the amber are released when the necklace is worn against a baby’s skin. In turn, the baby’s skin absorbs the oils, which include therapeutic succinic acid.
*A recent article in the New York Times raised the concern that the necklaces pose a suffocation and choking hazard to small children. The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend that babies wear any jewelry. Amber teething necklaces should only be worn only when the caregiver can physically see the child and are designed to be short enough that the baby can not get it into their mouth. Additionally, sellers do not recommend that they are worn in the water, so the integrity of the silk string is not compromised.
Baby-Friendly Biscuits- Take a piece of bread, cut the crust off, mash the bread as flat as you can, cover it with applesauce, sprinkle on cinnamon, and roll it as tight as you can. Then microwave it for 60 seconds to make it hard, then freeze for a few minutes. – I haven’t tried this tip, but I’m totally open to it. I’ve seen a few woman in my pregnancy group use these biscuits, and say they work pretty well.
Massaging Baby’s Gum’s with a soft toothbrush.– It circulates the blood up to the surface of the gum and helps with teething.
Icy Cold Water/Fruit Juice Slushie – Good for babies over 6 months. Can provide relief for achy gums.
Cold Foods – Icy food for suck on, chilled food to eat, yogurt, blended peaches, and applesauce (once they’ve already been introduced to your baby) are good ones to try.
As with anything that concerns you or your child’s health and development, please consult your physician first. Use your own sound mind and judgement before trying out these methods. Its always great to have multiple options and many tools in your toolkit when it comes to overcoming some of the more challenging parenting milestones. I hope these are helpful to you, and you can trust I’ll be sharing which methods work/don’t work for me in detail in the future.