Teething has to suck doesn't it, you're just a few months old, and getting used to being out in the big wide world, and suddenly, you're brand new mouth starts to feel weird, and painful and things are growing in their through your skin. You're so little that you can't speak yet to ask for help - and crying is pretty much the only way you can communicate.
And as a parent, you want to do all you can to soothe and help this process as best you can. I remember this well, and have shared a few tips of things that worked for us, and those that didn't.
Now these are not all born the same, ideally you want something that is super soft and easy for baby to hold themselves. One of my favourites is from Cloud and Cuckoo, this is a small business ran by a lovely lady that I met at a baby faire locally, and absolutely the softest teethers i've ever felt.
We didn't love the teethers that you're supposed to put in the fridge, we found these bulky and hard, and my son didn't take to them.
Especially toys with texture, that are easy to grip in various places. We love the range from Lanco, they are made in Spain using natural rubber. And come in so many fun designs and shapes. We stock the leaf at Green Cheeks, it's a great manageable size so that baby can hold independently, and lots of different sections to chew on.
Soft fruit and foods
If you're into the weaning stage and are taking the baby led way, offering soft chilled food like fruit can offer some relief. You could also try breadsticks or crusts for a harder chew. Do be careful and watch for choking of course.
Tried one, found it impossible to keep on babies hand and he wasn't interested. Fail for us.
There are so many of these on the market, but did you know, that there is little to no evidence available to support them actually doing anything? And i'd love to be able to tell you that we found one that solved the problem, but we didn't. The best of the bunch seemed to be the granules. The `Ashton & Parsons version, although the relief seemed quite short lived.
The baby versions, of course! From 3 months old, baby can start to take liquid paracetamol and ibuprofen - be sure to check dosages. On bad days, this was where we headed, especially if nap time was approaching.
The best of all for us, was cuddles, comfort and breastfeeding. Which I know not everyone chooses to do, but the teat of a bottle could also provide some comfort to sore gums. Feeding and holding your baby will give so much comfort. So just snuggle up, the clothes will get put away eventually!
You can rub the gums yourself with your fingers, you become the teething chew toy.
Despite trying so many cures to help the teething process, sadly there was no singular thing that did the trick. It was a combination of things, patience and time. Harrison seemed to get all of his teeth all at once, well, in quick succession at least anyway.
Other side effects of teething
Teething can have other effects, besides the red cheeks, chewing, discomfort and crying. And for us the main one was drool!! He seemed to drool for about 3 years! So keeping baby dry and comfortable was super important, we'd use dribble bibs to avoid full outfit changes. We occasionally used Childs Farm moisturiser or vaseline in his face if a rash developed. I've created oversized dribble bibs in our range to keep baby dry and stylish!
And nappy rash
Although there should be no direct correlation between nappy rash and teething, I certainly noticed an increase during these times. Mainly if a poo - we're talking quite solid, but squished versions - had been against the skin, it would leave a shaped mark on his bottom that could be sore. This would quickly clear as we were using cloth nappies and reusable wipes, so we weren't adding any chemicals into the equation. We'd use a cloth nappy safe rash cream too, such as Weleda, which was our favourite,
Teething is rubbish and babies going to need you, what works for your baby will take some trial and error, but hopefully you've found some hints and tips here for things to try. Although it will seem like teething is lasting forever when you're in the thick of it, in a few months time, you'll forget all about it and it'll be like it never happened. And you'll have a beautiful new little smile to show for your patience. Please seek medical advice if your baby seems unwell.