While some babies sprout their first few teeth with absolutely no problems, other babies—and their parents—have to deal with the long and painful process of teething. Here are some remedies you can try to soothe a teething baby.
The same way that ice is used to reduce swelling and numb pain in a sprained ankle, cold food and compresses can relieve the pain of sore gums. You may want to try giving your baby a teether, pacifier, or even a spoon placed in the refrigerator.
You may also place a wet washcloth dipped in water or breastmilk and chill it in the refrigerator. Some mothers try soaking the washcloth in chamomile tea, as it known to calm fussy babies and help them sleep better.
If your baby has already begun to eat solids, another cold option for your teething baby is offering chilled foods to both fill him or her up and soothe gum pain. Applesauce and yogurt are two great options. Chilled fruit such as banana or apple slices can also be placed inside a mesh feeder.
Chewing on a teether at room temperature is an option for babies who reject cold items. There is a wide variety of teethers made from different materials available today—so keep trying until you find one that works for your child.
Teething babies will grab just about anything that they can chomp on—including mommy’s necklace. Colorful teething jewelry worn around the neck or wrist can be purchased from various stores online and offline, made from materials of many other teething toys.
Some parents opt to give their teething baby some over-the-counter pain reliever, believing that a small dose of infant pain reliever can work wonders. Be sure to consult with your pediatrician first, however, as doctor’s approval for acetaminophen is needed for babies below 3 months old, and approval for ibuprofen is needed for babies below 6 months of age. Take note that the drug may irritate the stomach in some babies.
If all else fails, try the old-fashioned gum massage. Gently rub your baby’s gums with a clean finger to help ease the pain of teething.