Teething Tips from the Mother of a Barracuda
My daughter started teething at two months old and had 9 teeth by 9 months. Needless to say, I even think the La Leche League would understand why I didn't make it to 12 months of breastfeeding. Here are some of the things me and the hubby have learned over the last year.
- Here is a really good chart from Orajel about the symptoms: http://www.orajel.com/en/Resource-Center/Teething-Relief/Teething-Signs-And-Symptoms
- The best, no fuss way to check is just stick your finger out. If your kid is teething, they will try to gum it and that lets you feel the teeth below the gums or any any teeth that are poking through.
- It is worth it to buy a forehead thermometer. Trust me, when your kid has mini knives poking through their gums, the last thing you want to do is strip them down and stick a thermometer in their armpit, or worse yet, up their buttocks.
If you child starts teething early like our daughter, know that you will need different soothers because their jaws are still small. So yes, Sophie the Giraffe is great (albet a bit overpriced), but an small baby won't get much relief from her or the frozen rings. The two best things we found were:
Munchkin Orajel Front Teeth Teething Toy
1. Silicone teether toy that is labeled as "front teeth" or "stage 1." These will tend to be very flat so your young baby can nibble on them. As a note, these things have some weird magnetic force to attract dirt and pet furr, so be prepared to be constantly rinsing it off.
The First Years Star Teething Blanket
|2. Teething blanket. We really liked this particular one because each corner has a different texture and it was large enough that my daughter could hang onto it at that age. It is a crinkley material which also entertained her. This has become our "Go To" toy to give her in the car. On long road trips, I can generally tell if she is sleeping or not by whether I hear "Mr. Crinkles" coming from the backseat.|
Cold is Cool
- Things that are cold definitely help. Those things take a LONG time to refreeze though, so plan on buying quite a few of them so when one thaws you can immediately grab another.
- Get some extra Children's Snap Links that you can hook to the frozen rings so when your kid drops them (or throws them down), you don't have to keep picking them up.
- The items that worked best for us were the fabric type ones like the Sassy Terry Teethers. You can also just use a clean wash cloth and do the same thing. Soak in water, ring out, and then place in a Ziploc bag in freezer. NOTE: the Ziploc bag keeps it from permanently freezing to your shelf (trust me, lesson learned).
- For anything medicine related, always consult a doctor. At each of our checkups, the doctor would give us a dosage chart for pain relievers. I suggest hanging it on the fridge because you won't remember how many milliliters at 3am in the morning.
- Parents debate whether Children's Tylenol or Children's Motrin work best for teething pain. Honestly, each kid is different so try both at different times and see what helps best (NOTE: Motrin is only suggested for children over 6 months old).
- If you have already started your child on solids, give them their medicine using a spoon instead of a syringe. Our daughter learned to HATE the syringe and would fight us tooth and nail. We finally started measuring it in a syringe, then squirting it into spoonfuls and she just took it like a snack instead.
- Do NOT use Orajel or any product with Benzocaine in it on a child less than two. We actually used the Orajel Swabs on my daughter all the time, only to find an FDA warning that it can be FATAL for babies. Gee, maybe they should put that on the box.
Distractions are Key
- Same as adults, if you are hurt and just sit there with nothing else going on, it is hard not to focus on the pain. My tendency was always to cuddle my daughter when she was hurting, but I will be honest that many times my husband's shenanigans to get her to laugh ended up being more effective.
Vulli Sophie the Giraffe Teether
What things would you recommend adding to this post? Please leave comments!
Barracuda blog image used with permission from Copyright: bluedarkat / 123RF Stock Photo