Teething is a pain for everyone in the house. Your baby is miserable. He or she whines, cries, clings, and screams. That means none of the adults can sleep, chores pile up, and moods turn sour. Teething is a brief season in your life as a parent, but it’s a difficult one. Luckily, there are some natural ways to soothe your teething baby’s sore gums so you can have a bit of peace during these trying times.
Washcloths as Teething Toys
Soak a clean washcloth in chamomile tea and then pop it in the freezer until it’s crunchy but soft (about 30 minutes to an hour). Give it to your baby to chew on. The cold will reduce swelling, and the chamomile will soothe some of the pain. I usually keep two or three of these in rotation as teethers. They provide about 10 minutes of relief, and many babies find the texture entertaining.
Teething with a Toothbrush
Babies love toothbrushes. Your child sees you brushing your teeth and he or she wants to imitate you. But a soft-bristled, adult-sized toothbrush also makes a great teething toy. The soft bristles clean and soothe aching gums. For extra relief, run cold water over the toothbrush first. Keep two or three “teething toothbrushes” in reserve, as they tend to get scattered throughout the house.
If you have an older teething baby or a toddler, sensory play can help distract him or her from teething pain. Now is the time to pull out the messy toys that you usually avoid. Nontoxic modeling dough, finger paint, sand, and even shaving cream can help your child focus on something other than aching gums. Warm baths with plenty of toys can also help distract a teething baby. The key is to give your baby something else to think about.
Pucker Up with a Pickle
Pickles are a great help with little teethers. A cold, crunchy, all-natural kosher dill soothes the gums with its salt and vinegar. Your child can feel better as he or she reduces a pickle to a soggy mess. Remember, your baby may gum pieces off the pickle: Keep him or her close by so you can prevent any accidents.
Bedtime Demands Special Remedies
While it’s possible to go all-natural during the day, at night you may want to address pain with an infant-safe painkiller. Talk to your pediatrician to learn about appropriate brands and dosages.
How does your family deal with a teething baby? Share your stories and tips in the comments!
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