All parents dread it. The moment that angelic little smile shows signs of swelling, you know you’re in trouble. Each baby is different, some begin as early as three months, some begin teething as late as 12 months. It’s a challenging time for even the calmest of parents. We’ve wracked our brains to share some of the best tips we’ve tried.
Teething relief in babies of any age
A semi-frozen washcloth
Wet a washcloth, squeeze the excess water from it and put it in the freezer for 30 minutes. Either massage their gums with the cloth or just let them chew on it. The cold and the pressure will quickly ease their pain.
A warm bath before bedtime or naps relaxes babies and gets them prepared to sleep. Skip the soap and put a little bit of coconut oil in the bath to prevent baby’s skin from drying out.
Pain relief at night
Everything seems easier after a good night’s sleep. Providing a bit of pain relief with the medication your physician recommends (i.e. paracetamol) just before bed can help take the edge off their teething pain and get them ready for a long night of sleep. A win-win for both parents and babies!
Teething relief in babies over 6 months
Try this one once your little one has started on solid foods, between 4 and 6 months. This is especially helpful as it’s often painful for a teething baby to eat solids. Start with freezing any foods they’re already familiar with. Spread their food of choice on a piece of wax paper and freeze to make a ‘disk’ of frozen food – a great snack and entertaining as well!
If your baby is able to drink from a straw, a healthy and cold smoothie will soothe their teeth and get some calories in.
You’ve likely experienced the magical powers ice has on swelling. Wrap an ice-cube in a clean towel or put a pacifier in a water/breastmilk/formula-filled ice-cube tray to make a mini popsicle.
Keep their gums clean
When babies are teething, they’ll put anything and everything in their mouths. This can lead to tiny abrasions on their gums which may become infected. Using a wet, clean washcloth, to clean their gums, mouth and tongue and minimize breath smell. Once molars come out, usually at 14-18 months of age, it is recommended to use toothbrush. Make sure to use a fluoride-free and toddler-specific toothbrush on those pearly whites.
Most of all, good luck and know that this too, shall pass!