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Babies 0-12 Months | Your Baby's Wellbeing

Teething symptoms and remedies

While teething may not be a happy time for mom and dad, it’s definitely not a good time for baby. Imagine a throbbing toothache twenty-four-seven. Not fun. While these teething remedies will help with pain and discomfort, nothing can beat some tender loving care and a good dose of patience!

When do babies start teething?

Every baby is different. Some babies will be typical text book cases, cutting teeth exactly when the books suggest they should, while others might jump the gun or be late bloomers. There is no wrong way of cutting teeth; your baby will grow and develop at his own pace.

teething-chart1

This teething chart is merely a suggestion to guide and prepare you:

Upper jaw:

1. 7 ½ months
2. 9 months
3. 18 months
4. 14 months
5. 24 months
6. 6 years

Lower jaw:

1. 6 months
2. 7 months
3. 16 months
4. 12 months
5. 20 months
6. 6 years

Teething signs and symptoms

  • Loss of appetite
  • Disturbed sleep, mostly at night
  • Restless and niggly
  • Softer stools due to all the saliva they swallow
  • Nappy rash
  • Rash on cheeks and chin due to excessive drooling
  • Temperature due to gum inflammation – a high fever should be checked out
  • Possible bleeding when a tooth cuts

Teething remedies

  • Teething necklaces can be worn from 3 – 4 months of age. It’s a homeopathic remedy that contains Baltic Amber and provides relief for teething problems. Wearing Baltic Amber close to the skin will help calm a baby without resorting to drugs. The natural anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties of Baltic Amber are perfect to soothe teething babies. It’s made for wearing, not for chewing.
  • Powders and gels can be used, but use them sparingly as these are seen as medication and you don’t want to overdo it. Rather try homeopathic products that are safe to use on a regular basis.
  • Ask your paediatrician for pain relief if your baby is suffering from pain and is struggling to cope.
  • Teething rings and dummies should be cleaned and kept in the fridge (not freezer) until needed.
  • Anything cold to suck on such as a wet, clean facecloth or a cold carrot will bring relief.
  • Teething biscuits, biltong and unsweetened rusks are great teething treats that will soothe inflamed gums.
  • Use Chamomilla 30X, a very effective homeopathic teething remedy.
  • A tiny bit of clove oil can be rubbed on the gums to bring relief. Don’t use too much as it can upset baby’s tummy.
  • Soothe baby’s gums by massaging it with your finger.
  • Use a teething net (availabe at Baby City) to cover a piece of cold fruit or vegetable for baby to chew on.

Caring for baby’s new teeth

  • Don’t leave your baby propped up with his bottle. The milk tends to gather in his mouth without being swallowed and can, over time, cause tooth decay.
  • Avoid sweet drinks (this includes fruit juices); rather offer Rooibos (no sugar) or water. If you do give fruit juice, dilute it with water.
  • Start cleaning baby’s teeth with tooth wipes or a small brush and water as soon as it appears. Avoid toothpaste as your baby cannot rinse his mouth at this stage. Brush morning and evening and after a sweet treat.
  • Encourage good eating habits.
  • There is some uncertainty as to whether your child should take fluoride tablets or not. Discuss this with your dentist.

When to worry

Sometimes it’s difficult to detect whether a baby is teething or in actual fact suffering from an ear infection or some other illness. When there is vomiting, diarrhoea or a high temperature, please have your baby checked out by your GP or paediatrician.

The first few teeth are usually more troublesome, so don’t get discouraged. The moment you spot the first signs of teething, take a deep breath and visit the health shop. You might have to experiment with the above mentioned remedies to find what works best for your baby. Before you know it you will have a happy camper with a mouth-full of healthy teeth and equally happy parents!

2 Responses to “Teething symptoms and remedies”

  1. Marcia says:

    Hi

    I’m a bit concerned about my 7 month baby because she doesn’t seem to like bottle milk and I need to stop breast feeding because I will be travelling a lot starting next month. How can I get her to take the bottle? As she only drinks half a bottle of milk the whole day and I breastfeed her when i get back from work.

    Another concern is that she doesn’t sleep well during the day but sleeps right through the night, how much sleep or naps does she need in order to develop normally?

    Thank you
    Worried mom

  2. Editor says:

    Marcia > At seven months your baby should be having a combination of home-made (purified) food, finger foods and bottles. Use this month to slowly wean her off some of the bottles. You can replace the breast milk with formula milk or you can express, whichever works best for you – breast milk is of course the very best!

    Click here to have a look at our eating routine for a 7-month old baby.

    As for the sleeping, your baby should have at least 2 naps: One in the morning and one in the afternoon.

    Remember that it’s all about creating new habits. Baby will soon get used to this new way of doing things!

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