It’s our belief that the phrase, “Poor baby,” originated during the teething period in some not-so-distant baby’s life. It’s tough to watch your baby go through teething, even if her sweet smile is extra cute when it’s dripping in drool.
But moms and dads are great at making baby feel better. Which is probably why you’re here – scrolling through this article with one hand while baby gnaws the fingers of the other. So, let’s talk tips for teething.
Give Teething Baby a Gum Massage
The way your baby is currently working your finger is a clear indication they’re going through teething, which begins on average around 6 months old, but can begin anytime between 3 and 12 months. And it’s actually a great way to numb their gums. Just gently rub a clean finger along her gums and not only will you relieve some pain, your direct interaction helps calm her. But baby teeth can be sharp and once a tooth or two comes through, you may want to consider switching her to something not made of your flesh.
Swap Your Finger for a Textured Teether
A textured teether is a teether that features some sort of raised pattern. The reason texture is so important is because it applies small spots of focused pressure much like your finger. Look for a textured teether that can reach all the way to the back of baby’s mouth, like the Dr. Brown’s® Nawgum® Teether. The “arms” of the cactus-like shape of the Nawgum act like an index finger, reaching to the back of the mouth without choking or gagging. The raised texture on the arms is designed specifically to target sensitive areas.
A teether like the Nawgum sticks with baby through the whole teething process, from the initial sore gums to tooth eruption throughout the mouth. This 3-in-1 teether features little bumpers on the top of the oval center that ease front teething, while the larger nubs on the body appease the side teeth coming in.
Chill Teething Baby’s Pacifier or Freeze a Rag
A chilled pacifier is perfect particularly for incoming front teeth, as it doesn’t reach very far into the back of baby’s mouth. They’re already familiar with it, so getting them to accept it won’t be an issue. All you need to do is dip the paci into cold water and place in the freezer to chill. Be sure to supervise baby and inspect pacifier for any signs of wear or damage.
Another option is to douse a wet rag in cold water and let that freeze. It’s soft enough to gnaw on, just make sure it’s supervised chewing. Rags might be a choking hazard and once they start to melt, they can make a mess.
Freeze Their Favorite Fruits
Choose fruit that’s age-appropriate and prepared according to their current chewing capabilities. A rough idea includes:
- Pureed apples, bananas and peaches for 4 – 6 months
- Strained peaches, avocado, bananas at 6 – 8 months
- Mashed fruits at 8 – 10 months
- Cubes or strips of fruit at 10 – 12 months
Frozen fruit prepared appropriately can be placed inside a mesh or silicone feeder to mitigate the mess and help baby feed more comfortably.
Distract Them from the Pain
If they aren’t dealing with a high-grade fever or other warning signs that something is going on other than teething, your silly faces, funny noises, and general interaction with them can do the trick. Taking their focus away from the pain and putting it on you also has the added benefit of bonding, telling baby that you are a serious source of entertainment.
All moms and dads who have been through the teething period will remind you of one saving grace: This will not last forever. Fill your toolbox with ways to ease their pain, and day by day you will get through it.
Let us know if you have any questions about the Dr. Brown’s® Nawgum® Teether and where to find it!