Many sleepless nights and screaming fits can result from teeth erupting from a baby’s gums, but with gels, toys, and teething rings, it can be hard to discern which option is best for relief. As a dental expert and a mom to five children, Dr. Meg has a few tips to help!
Unfortunately, numbing gels can be dangerous for your baby and do little to actually numb the pain. These gels will likely rub off before the numbing agent can go into effect, and the numbing agent can kick in after the saliva washes the gel off the gums and carries it around the lips and into the throat. This impacts a baby’s ability to swallow, which can become detrimental to their well-being.
Instead, Dr. Meg recommends the following home remedies that are sure to soothe a baby’s aching gums!
- She will often freeze low-sugar yogurt with Popsicle sticks poking through the bottom. Freeze the yogurt to the point where it’s solid but not too frozen, so the baby can gnaw on this homemade Popsicle and enjoy a healthy snack. You can also do this with seedless watermelon and peel-less apple slices.
- Find rubber, mesh, or gel-like rings or blocks, and cool these toys slightly. Again, as your baby chews on these items, they will feel cool relief. Some toys and chewers even have options for including food into the mix!
- Wet a washcloth with cool water, chill it in the refrigerator or freezer — be careful not to freeze it completely — and allow Baby to suck and chew on it.
- If all else fails, your finger can offer the pain-relief your baby needs. Just make sure your hands are clean when Baby needs relief in a pinch.
While gels may not be the solution they promise to be, other medicated creams can work wonders. Rotating the appropriate dosage of Tylenol or Advil can offer relief, while petroleum jellies or lip balms can soothe the region around a baby’s lips from drool-related rashes. Do not smear these products directly onto a baby’s lips to avoid as much ingestion as possible.
Teething is an unavoidable part of development for babies, but you can make the experience bearable for your child. When in doubt, ask Dr. Meg for more Supermom Tips!