The rollercoaster that is your teething baby can get very consuming, demanding, and draining. While parents are happy and enthused about their baby’s first tooth, they also go through horrible midnight cries and an ongoing cranky mood throughout the whole day from their newly teething baby.
Because you want nothing but to soothe your aching baby, here are 10 things that you can do to help with the pain and save you from the constant crying:
Research is highly important when your baby is teething, especially if it is your first time around a teething newborn. Research will help you know when do babies start teething, what to expect, suggest a few remedies, etc. Taking care of a teething baby can be a struggle because it is not only about their teeth breaking through their gums, a few things may go wrong and you need to be familiar with the symptoms. For instance teething babies are prone to fever, swollen gums, grabbing their ears and face, biting or chewing on anything they can find, have teething rash around mouth and chin, trouble sleeping and red cheeks, refusing to feed, and are very irritable. If any of these symptoms checks out, don’t worry your baby is just teething not sick.
2. Keep it Cool
Most mothers ease the pain by gently rubbing the gums with a clean cold washcloth or by rubbing the gums with a clean finger. Others suggest getting frozen fruits or vegetables and applying them to the baby’s gums. Whatever it is that you decide to use, make sure it is clean, and not freezing cold just cold enough to ease the baby’s pain not make it worse.
3. Go Natural
Understand that what is causing the pain is the inflammation from teething that triggers the nerves. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce the inflammation naturally, by avoiding white solid foods. White foods contain anything that has dairy, potatoes, refined sugar and flour, etc. Instead of instilling white foods into your baby’s diet, try focusing on paleo-type foods. That contains a variety of fresh vegetables and fruits, ample healthy fats, seafood, and pastured meats.
4. Chew Toys
Chew toys are a common resort that parents resort to when their baby is teething. The science behind chew toys is fairly simple; basically the baby needs to bite on or chew anything to ease the pain or anything that will provide pressure, and that is exactly what chew toys provide, pressure. Make sure that the chew toys are clean and are unbreakable. Some chew toys have liquid, flour, or plaster inside them and that seems harmless until your newly born decides to bite it. The thing about new teeth is that they are VERY sharp, so now you can see where the problem is. Your baby can easily break the chew toy and whatever is inside of it will reside in your baby’s mouth. It does not matter if the substance inside the chew toy is not toxic; the risk is not worth your baby’s health.
Simple distractions can catch your baby off guard and make them forget about the pain for a while. They could be anything from a simple activity with your baby to introducing a new toy to them. A simple peek-a-boo game can take your baby’s mind off of the pain, or a new rattling toy with a bright color can distract your baby.
If you feel like the pain is exceeding its limits with your baby, then you can seek help from medications. First and foremost, it is very important to consult your doctor before giving your baby any sort of medication. Stray away from any medication that contains aspirin, benzocaine, or homeopathic teething tablets and gels.
There are plenty of natural remedies, safe strategies, and medications to help soothe your baby’s aching gums, but not every solution you find online is going to work out for your baby. It is a long process of trial and error, so try every safe option with your baby and observe how your baby reacts to it.
8. Call the Doctor
Unfortunately, a lot of things may go haywire during the teething phase. Though most mothers have the teething situation under control, other mothers face problems such as their baby growing extra teeth, tooth decay, gum diseases, blood blisters, etc. If you notice your baby growing extra teeth, has blue gums, etc. do not hesitate to call your doctor immediately.
There are plenty of misconceptions around remedies for teething babies, most of them are harmless but other remedies are not preferable for your newly born. For instance, some parents believe that rubbing alcohol on your baby’s gums will help soothe the pain. Alcohol exposure, even if it is in small doses, at such a young age could be toxic and fatal to them. Alcohol could cause respiratory failure, hypoglycemia, and seizures.
10. First Tooth
It is highly recommended by the ADA to use a toothbrush once the baby starts growing teeth. The toothbrush should suit the baby’s teeth, so it should have a small head and soft, rounded bristles to clean the baby’s teeth without hurting their gums. It is preferable to wash the baby’s teeth in the morning and evening with plain water, after 18 months you could use low-fluoride toothpaste on your baby’s teeth.
Going through the teething phase is more tiring than most phases due to the lack of sleep, the excessive amount of crying, trying to feed the baby, trying to find suitable remedies, etc. It is a long process of trial and error, so you need to be patient with your baby and figure out what works best with their aching gums. Whatever you remedy you decide to go through with, make sure that it is healthy, suitable for your baby, clean, and most importantly safe. Always rely on your doctor’s advice and avoid any suggested medication from the Internet.