Seeing your baby crying in pain and not knowing how to help can be pretty distressing for any parent. Unfortunately, teething is inevitable, and although it may not be possible to fix your baby’s pain immediately, there are ways you can help to soothe it.
Although the pain of teething can start from as early as 3-4 months, teeth don’t tend to come through until 6-8 months and sometimes even later.
Typical signs your baby is teething include:
- Red gums
- Mild fever
- Flushed cheeks
- Dribbling more than usual
- Irritable behaviour
- A rash on the face
- Difficulty sleeping
Other signs that you usually don’t read about:
- Many babies will try to put their fists in their mouths with whinging and unsettled behaviours.
- Wanting to feed more often on the bottle or breast, but only snacking and making a gnawing sound.
- A cranky, cranky, irritable baby that cannot be pleased unless something is in its mouth!
Don’t worry! There are several ways to alleviate the symptoms of teething but let’s look at the top 5 ways to soothe your baby.
1. Teething Toys
Possibly the most popular choice for soothing teething is a teething toy! You’ll often see babies reaching for something to put in their mouth while they are teething, so having a teething toy that you know is fit for the job is the perfect solution.
There are so many teething toys available, finding the ideal one for your baby can be a bit of trial and error. We recommend our Mother and Baby Comforter Blanket with Teething Ring. Available in a range of colours and patterns, this ‘2 in 1’ must-have product provides the perfect relief for your little one.
Tip: Wet the corners of the blanket with clean boiled water and pop it in the freezer. The cold icy ends will bring extra relief to your baby on those bad days.
2. Gum Massage
Sometimes, nothing can beat a massage, and the same goes for your teething baby. Using a clean finger, gently massage your baby's gums in circular motions for 1-2 minutes. This technique helps to relieve pressure and ease pain and discomfort.
3. Chilled Fruit
You’ll often find that your baby is refusing food when teething. Chilling fruits can be an excellent way to combat this and soothe your baby’s teething pain. If your little one has already been introduced to solids, try chilling sliced apple or carrot for your baby to chew on. The coolness of the food coupled with the solid texture is a winning combination during those teething months.
If your baby is yet to start on solids, try a mesh feeder filled with frozen or cooled fruits like bananas or berries for the same effect.
4. Extra Cuddles & Distraction
Other than being a super cute remedy, some find that extra cuddles can go a long way during the teething stages. Cuddles are always the best treatment, and cuddling your baby while teething can provide instant comfort and reduce distress. Try using a baby carrier when moving around the house. A change of environment, noise, temperature and light can bring your baby some much-needed distraction from the discomfort of teething. You can swap from the pram to the carrier and back again. Do whatever it takes to keep yourself and your baby calm and happy.
5. Pain Medicine
As a last resort, you can consult your paediatrician about medication for your baby. Medicine can provide much-needed pain relief and reduce inflammation. Your paediatrician will be able to offer advice on dosage and the correct treatment for your baby.
A baby's sleep schedule is often interrupted by the pain and discomfort of teething. Medication can be a good option if it becomes unmanageable using other remedies.
The last and most important tip is not to panic! The teething process can be stressful for both parents and little ones. You can keep your baby as comfortable as possible with the suggestions above. Don’t forget to reach out to other parents—they will make you realise it's completely normal to dance around your house with a baby strapped to your chest while listening to Abba. It is totally fine!