Teething is a difficult time for parents, and even more for babies. Teeth can start to come in anywhere from 3 months of age to 12 months, and will continue doing so until around age 3. Its symptoms include excessive drooling, sensitive red gums, inconsolable crying, chewing, decreased appetite, rubbing of cheeks or ear, rashes around the mouth or neck, and decreased appetite.
If you find yourself in the teething zone which occurs anywhere between 4 months old and around 2 years old, you don’t have to be stuck here. BabyShopClub.com gives the best remedies so you and your baby can live your best life, one tooth at a time.
Teething babies love to chew, and for good reason: The gumming action provides counter-pressure, which relieves the aching of new pearly whites pushing up and out into the mouth. Bumpy rubber teething rings, rattles and other chewy, soft toys work well. Chewing is even more effective when the object is cold and numbs the gums. Keep a supply of teething toys or wet washcloths in the fridge.
Your clean finger, teething toys with nubbly edges or a soft, wet toothbrush (without toothpaste) rubbed firmly on baby’s gums can provide the same soothing counter-pressure as teething rings and wet cloths. Your baby may balk at first because it might hurt initially, but it soon brings relief.
A bottle of cold water can offer chilly relief to achy gums for babies over 6 months (when water can be introduced). If baby doesn’t take a bottle, you can give (ice-free) water in a cup.
Refrigerated food such as yogurt, blended peaches and applesauce (once they’ve already been introduced to your baby) can be more appetizing than warm or room-temperature treats, and can ease achy gums. Or give frozen fruits like bananas and plums in a baby silicone feeder (so large chunks of food can’t pose a choking risk), but only under adult supervision and with baby sitting or propped upright.
If chewing, rubbing and sucking chilly foods don’t do the trick, break out the baby acetaminophen — but only after checking with your pediatrician.
Extra snuggles, kisses and lots of patience are what a teething baby craves.
Avoid amber teething necklaces
There’s no medical evidence to suggest that amber teething necklaces work, and most pediatricians advise against them, in large part because they can pose a choking hazard.
Peeled ginger root
Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory that helps to relieve teething pain by soothing the nerve endings in the gums. For the strongest effect, rub a slice of peeled ginger over your baby’s gums for 2-3 minutes.
Freeze a washcloth
Freeze a damp washcloth and let your baby chew on it for a cool, numbing sensation. For some variety, you can tie one end in a knot before freezing, or soak the cloth in chamomile tea instead of water.
Freeze a bottle
Fill a bottle with water and freeze it (upside down so that the water is frozen in the nipple) and then let your baby chew on the cold nipple. You can also get water soaked into a pacifier and freeze it for the same effect.
When to call the doctor about teething
Teething can cause bleeding under the gums, which may look like a bluish lump in baby’s mouth. It’s nothing to be concerned about and can be relieved with a cool, wet washcloth.
While some parents swear that low-grade fever and diarrhea are teething symptoms, doctors are divided on whether that’s true. But like inflammation anywhere else in the body, inflamed gums can sometimes produce a low-grade fever.
So, if your little one does develop a temperature of under 101 degrees while he’s cutting a tooth, it could be caused by swelling of the gums and isn’t anything to worry about. If the fever continues for more than three days, if it’s higher than 101 degrees or if it’s accompanied by any other symptoms of illness, call your pediatrician.
Remember that any teething remedy you choose should be safe and nontoxic. Ask your pediatrician or dentist if you have any concerns, or want to try something you find on the internet or learn about from other parents. There are dozens of “natural” recommendations that have been around for generations but not all of them are a good idea.