If baby has been crying more than usual lately, it could very well be that they might have begun the process of teething. Teething can start as young as 3 months old, and can drastically affect their temperament. When I’m doing my family photography and baby photography, I like to keep these tips in my back pocket, just in case I need them. Take a look at some ways that you can take care of your child when their little mouths are in pain.
1. Keep Baby’s Mouth Cool
It can help to keep your child’s mouth on the cooler side, as that tends to help numb any discomfort and pain. I recommend using a soft, clean washcloth and running it under cool (not cold) water. After you wring it out, you can apply a corner of it to baby’s affected area. By allowing baby to slightly gnaw on it, the action mixed with the cool temperature can help alleviate the issue almost instantly.
2. Apply a Clean Finger to the Tooth/Gum Area
A really effective method I’ve found is simply using your index finger to apply some mild pressure to the new-tooth area. After you wash your hands (preferably with a non-strong-flavored hand soap), you can slip your finger into the area where baby’s gums are and give a very mild massage near the affected tooth. The counter-pressure provided from the inside gives a quick relief.
This method can take care of two birds with one stone. Whether baby is hungry or just teething, attempting to breastfeed can remedy the situation. Perform the feeding as usual, and baby should be able to latch on. In the instance where pain may be too much to latch, doing the finger-to-gum massage beforehand may make a difference. The goal is to keep baby comfortable throughout the entire process.
4. Buy a Teething “Toy”
There are toys specially designed for teething babies, that are often made from soft, plush materials. By getting one of these for your child, it allows them to safely gnaw and chew with their newly-growing tooth, and is designed to last throughout the teething process. I recommend finding one that is washer-safe, so you can add that to your laundry routines.
Do you have any tips for new mommas on how you’ve dealt with teething babies? Please feel free to send your comments and suggestions below!