Any parent of a teething baby will tell you how frustrating that time can be. I myself have been on the other end of this teething business for about six months now and wow. In order to soothe his achy gums, I decided to try alternative remedies before medication. Here’s the list of what worked best from most successful to least. Remember if your child has 4 teeth or more and is using them to bite pieces off of his food, then using a teether will allow you to use frozen and cold foods as a remedy with peace of mind. Here is the brand I use along with several of my mama pals.
When my son began teething he was 4.5 months old. His first two bottom teeth came in first, followed by his top two. Using food was a great tool (when it wasn’t bedtime, but there are plenty of remedies that are bedtime-safe on this list!) because it was a distraction from the pain and it usually tasted good. The nice cold feeling was alarming at first, which would stop any crying, and then it would become very satisfying to him. His absolute favorite was pineapple! – Pinapple is super acidic and that’s just what your baby’s gums need during the teething process! The pineapple helps break down the gum tissue slightly so that tooth can poke right through! Here are a few other food remedies that proved successful:
-Frozen cheese sticks in a teether
-Cold celery- it helps with the inflammation of gums!
– Very cold almost frozen bananas in a teether
–Pinapple- Pinapple is super acidic and that’s just what your babys gums need! The pineapple helps break down the gum tissue slightly so that tooth can poke right through!
-For babies over one year old: rub honey on gums as its filled with healthy enzymes and sugars.
-Washcloths- Either wet and warm or semi frozen. My baby loved both, as did many mamas I’ve polled. Don’t freeze them 100% as that can cut or burn your baby’s gums. Nobody needs that on top of teething.
Over the counter remedies
Over the counter medication can usually help with the pain of teething but the choice is up to you whether or not to take that road. ALWAYS ask your child’s doctor before using any medication and make sure you are following the directions on the label.
What remedies to avoid:
-Oral gels with benzocaine- As you may have heard, the FDA issued a statement warning consumers of the dangers of teething tablets and gels. Benzocaine is sort of a “magic ingredient” in most oral gels but can be very dangerous for your baby. It can cause a condition called methemoglobinemia, a condition that greatly reduces the amount of oxygen carried in the bloodstream. The announcement included a statement from Janet Woodcock, MD and director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research: “Teething can be managed without prescription or over-the-counter remedies, we recommend parents and caregivers not give homeopathic teething tablets and gels to children and seek advice from their health care professional for safe alternatives.”
-Teething tablets- In 2017 The FDA confirmed an elevated level of a chemical called “belladonna” in certain homeopathic teething remedies including teething tablets. Belladonna is sometimes called “deadly nightshade”. Learn more about the FDA announcement here.
–Amber teething necklaces- are warned against by the American Academy of Pediatrics. They pose as a choking hazard and no sufficient evidence is found to support their use.
More about teething…
When do babies start teething?
According to the American Dental Association the Averageis 6 months. Bottomtwoareusuallyfirst. Followed by the top two front. It is a sometimes painful but natural experience and never easy. First things first, I think its super important
Normal teething behavior
Excessive drooling, rash can form around mouth from excessive moisture
An increased urge to chew on hard things, and especially using the same areas of the gums while chewing.
-fussiness especially at bedtime when there are no distractions
Touching ear or face
Fever, anything below 101 is okay, anything above you should call the doctor!
When should you call the doctor?
You should feel at liberty call the doctor WHENEVER you feel like you need to but they will most likely ask you if your child has the following symptoms:
Temperature of 101 degrees Fahrenheit or above
Keep being aware, informed and careful with whatever treatments you choose to use on your child. It’s always the right choice to second guess and read the fine print. You will always know what’s best for your little one, mama! Teething is tough but end is right around the corner, you’ll push through! No pun intended….