Not only is the first year with a baby full of adjustments when it comes to sleep, meals and overall lifestyle, but the teething stage can sneak up to you faster than you've expected. Teething can begin in children anywhere between the ages of 4-6months. Some children (in rare occurrences) can even be born with teeth- believe it or not!
When the first tooth cuts, many won't be surprised; your child will sure to let you know in some way or another that they're experiencing pain and discomfort. Parents will nearly try everything they can to settle their child. From mood swings to random bursts of screaming, teething can affect your baby and child during the day and night.
Read below as we have 10 incredible tricks to soothe your teething baby. We hope that it will not only make the teething stage easier for your child, but for you- the parent, as well!
10 SMOOTHIE POPSICLES
Let's jump right into a tasty and easy way to assist in helping your baby feel much better while cutting those brand-new baby teeth. Popsicles are an incredible way to not just soothe but numb the gums that are working so hard to push those teeth out. Rather than freezing plain-old juice, why not combine just a few more ingredients to add more substance to the classic treat?
Blend a mixture of almond milk, a couple of ripe bananas and a handful of berries for a quick and yummy smoothie. Freeze them overnight into popsicle molds and there you have it: a delicious smoothie popsicle that will soothe your baby's gums and be a healthy and quick snack for their day!
9 CRUNCHY SNACKS
Speaking of snacks, anything with crunch will help with their irritated gums.
Age and chewing skills permitting, offer them things such as rice crackers (which melt quite easily in their mouths), heads of raw broccoli and pieces of toast. While they eat their snacks or consume their crunchier lunch items, these food items will massage their gums just right.
8 TOOTH BRUSHING
Many dentists will suggest introducing brushing your little one's teeth by the time they cut their first tooth. We suggest to introduce it even earlier!
When you first notice the signs of teething approaching (which can be very early in their first year), bring out their first toothbrush. Incorporate brushing their teeth after each meal so they quickly get used to its routine. Once they do, they'll begin to brush and chew on their toothbrush themselves because it feels so good.
7 MUSICAL DISTRACTION
If their gums are far too sensitive for chewing on anything while they teeth, a good, musical distraction is always a great thing to resort to. A new study shows that music (specifically - live music) significantly lowers baby's stress hormones.
Music can be incredibly calming for a baby. While they're in physical pain, a good distraction can simply be some good music! Whether you have calming tunes on or some dance-hall fun, music can be a positive way to get their minds off of their pain.
6 SEMI-FROZEN CLOTH
A classic trick with a twist to help babies while teething: a (semi-frozen) washcloth. Run a washcloth under water. Freeze overnight. When you remove it from the freezer, to ensure the baby does not get frostbite, warm it up slightly in your hands. Allow the baby to gum on that cloth for as long as they'd like. While the cloth (quickly) melts in their mouth, they will love the feeling of its texture and sensation.
A go-to when a baby is upset (in nearly any way) is resorting to the boob.
If you've chosen to breastfeed, this option is a great and natural way to calm an upset baby. Especially while they're in pain, babies tend not to know what to do. Their stress hormones are elevated and in some cases, they may not even want to hold onto that wet washcloth that you've waited all night long to freeze. By breastfeeding, you are comforting your teething baby in multiple ways: giving them a quick snack, holding them close to your body and passing on antibodies that may help with reducing pain.
Physical touch to young babies is so important. Whether it's skin-to-skin before the age of one or holding them close to you while they cry, embracing your child at any age is incredibly important.
Hugging can be just what the doctor ordered. With young children, before they're able to express their true feelings, they act out in very elaborate ways. Babies can teeth well into toddler-hood, and at times, children are "acting out" because they're in pain- so don't take it personally. 10 Simple Responses To A Rebellious Toddler That Will Work touches upon how to respond to those who are expressing their "big feelings" and how, as the parent, can learn to keep calm and embrace their needs.
Many times when children are crying, those are the moments they need us the most.
3 FROZEN TEETHERS
Similarly to freezing that washcloth, putting a teether (and other safe toys) in the freezer is a very effective way to help a teething child. Whether it's a teething ring or a large, wooden block that they happen to notoriously chew on, pop them (all, if you want) into the freezer overnight to chill.
When they're ready to be removed, they'll be cold enough to have a cooling effect on the baby's gums.
2 FRESH AIR
Have you ever had a hysterical baby, unable to calm by (virtually) anything and you're at your wit's end!? The last resort was frustratingly barging outside with the wailing child in your arms when suddenly- they stop. The burst of fresh air was enough to calm your crying child.
Many times in life, we over-complicate things. Even with little ones, the simplest things in life can be the answer. Fresh air has a calming effect on us all. When all else fails, try bringing your teething baby on a stroller ride or pop them into your baby carrier. You'll be glad you tried. (Bonus, getting some physical activity outside will calm you, the parent, down a little more, too).
1 HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES
In modern-day parenting, there are many more options than generic pain medications. Whether you choose to try homeopathic remedies or not, it is safe to speak to your doctor or pediatrician before offering them to your little ones.
There are many safe options out there, so why not give them a go? Your baby may settle in no time. And, don't forget... this too shall pass.