Most parents dread the teething phases because of the challenges that come along with each phase. When you’ve got a teething baby, a lot changes from the normal everyday routine. The little one is in pain, which means there are sleepless nights, tears, and overall discomfort. Things like fevers and drooling can also go along with teething.
While you might feel helpless when your little one is crying nonstop throughout the night, there are a few ways that you can make teething easier for baby and your whole house. Hopefully one of these 5 teething tricks will help everyone to have a good night’s sleep and make baby’s life better too!
1. Massage the baby’s gums
One good way to comfort a teething baby is by rubbing their gums. Be gentle when doing this to prevent any added discomfort. A little bit of pressure is okay though! You may want to use a damp piece of gauze or a damp washcloth. Cool water will feel best for the baby. You can also use your own clean finger.
There are also teething gel medications that you can apply to a baby’s gums. These can help to ease the pain as well. You can apply these with your finger as well or with a washcloth when massaging the gums.
2. Give the baby something cold to chew on
The classic trick is to put a teething ring in the fridge or freezer. This is a great way to help with baby’s irritated gums. There are a few other things that you can pop in the fridge or freezer as well. When my kids were teething, I kept a variety of these items in my fridge. This was useful in case I forgot to replace whatever I had taken out earlier in the day. It also helps to have backups if the baby ends up rejecting one or two of the items!
You can put a spoon in the fridge and allow the baby to chew on it. It’s important that you don’t put a spoon in the freezer, as it could get stuck on the baby’s lips or mouth. Be sure to keep an eye on the little one with the spoon to make sure they don’t poke their eyes or shove the spoon down their throat. Most toys can also be put in the fridge or freezer. You might want to put a pacifier or two in there as well!
3. Give the baby cold foods to eat
In addition to toys, pacifiers, spoons, and teething rings, you can give a baby frozen food to chew on or eat. This is especially helpful if you’re having a hard time getting the baby to eat anyway. A few good frozen foods to offer a teething baby include bananas, berries, and other fruits. You could also give baby a large carrot or stalk of celery to chew on. There are even mesh bags that are made for teething purposes. You can put any cold food inside, and baby can gnaw away!
You might also want to give the baby cold applesauce or yogurt. These foods won’t cause extra pressure on a baby’s sensitive gums and they will soothe the irritation.
4. Try some alternative teething toys
We have all tried those plastic teething rings. Those can be helpful, and they will often work! Some little ones—like a couple of my children—get bored with them over time or just don’t like them anyway. Luckily, there are some other options out there.
Some teething toys vibrate, which gives babies a different sensation than a standard teether. Some of them only vibrate when a baby actually bites down on them. There are also teething blankets. They have a variety of textures so that the baby can change things up if they want to. Plus, they can easily be thrown in the washer. If your baby doesn’t want to hold onto their chilled plastic teether from the freezer, there are teethers that have separate handles that detach while the rest of the toy is freezing.
5. Use an over-the-counter medication
If none of the other remedies work for your baby, it’s probably a good idea to give them some pain relief medicine. These will help to ease the pain and reduce a low-grade fever. Look for a medicine containing either acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Make sure that you choose one that is specifically for infants.
Always follow the recommended dosages, and wait the suggested time before giving the baby another dose. Don’t mix the two medicines unless your baby’s doctor says it’s okay to!