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Soothe those teething pains

Thursday 08 July 2021

Teething is something we all hear about, and we are often warned that it will be a terrible time. But does it have it to be that way?  

I am going to share some information with you about teething and what you can do to help your baby through it. 

Firstly of course, babies are all different and whilst some will start teething really early, others may not get their teeth until after their first birthday. My youngest son didn’t get his first tooth until he was 16 months old! However, the average age babies get their first teeth is between 6-12 months. Teeth start developing in the womb, which is why some babies are born with teeth… I know, I couldn’t imagine that either.  

We have an image of the teeth cutting and ripping through the gum as they work their way up to the surface and of course, it is very unpleasant to think our babies will have to go through that. 

However, there are special chemicals that are released which cause the gum to separate, leaving a pathway for the tooth to ease its way through. 

Whilst it is going to be uncomfortable for your little one, trusting that the body knows what it is doing can be reassuring. 

So how do we know if baby is teething? 

Many of us are told to expect the rosy cheeks and dribbling, but some babies will also lose their appetite, not wanting to feed, pulling away from the breast or pulling and rubbing their ears as if they have earache. A slight temperature can also be a common teething symptom.  

Also, I don’t know if there is any science to it, but my eldest son would always get a cold the week leading up to a new tooth. It took me a few teeth to see the pattern, but when I did, sure enough he would get a runny nose and then five days later a tooth would appear. 

I’m sure you are all thinking that this does not sound like much fun at all, so can I get on with it and share the ‘secrets’ already. 

Don’t worry, the good news is that there are lots of things you can do to make baby as comfortable as possible.   

Top tips

  • Teethers – these come in all forms these days; rings, animal toys, hand mitts, and even necklaces for the parent to wear. 
  • Gels and powders – there are a lot in the supermarkets to choose from, but just do your research and go with what suits you best. It often comes down to trial and error with these things. 
  • Breast milk ice pops – if you are breastfeeding this is genius, especially on those warmer days. You can buy little lolly molds specifically for baby and pour your milk directly into them, freeze and hey presto! Your baby – no matter how old they are – can have something nice and cold to suck on and relieve their gums. 
  • Face massage – so easy to do, especially as you do not have to remember to pack anything in your changing bag to do it. Drawing a smile over baby’s upper and lower gum lines will alleviate the pain instantly. Have you ever wondered why we grab our elbow when we bang it on something? It is because pressure travels faster than pain to the brain. Another massage technique you could try is making circles on baby’s cheeks (a good excuse to make them pull some very cute funny faces if you ask me). This will release natural endorphins which will set to work on reducing any inflammation, helping to settle baby. 

Have you tried any of these teething treatments before?  It would be great to hear what has worked for you, so do reach out and let us know. 

Before I go, I thought I would leave you with a favourite quote of mine…

“This too shall pass.”  

Something to hold on to, on those slightly longer days.  

Emma x 

Written by Emma, Basking Babies Hornchurch

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