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Teething = the bane of every parent’s existence, and certainly an intimidating part of every kid’s development. It’s not something you can just magically fix, and the process leaves everyone grumpy or upset. Even if there is no magic cure, there are things you can do to make it easier on your little one while their teeth start to come in.
Unfortunately, you have to be wary about some of the teething advice you might find on the internet. I know that sounds weird because I’m writing this to give you advice, but I’m serious!
I recommend avoiding any homeopathic treatments can contain belladonna, also known as deadly nightshade. If the name doesn’t clue you in, the plant is known to cause breathing problems and possibly seizures.
I’d also avoid teething necklaces, and that advice comes straight from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), who also warned about teething bracelets that babies would wear.
There are safe methods to help soothe the pain of teething. A common method is to use a chilled (but not frozen!) washcloth, spoon, or even a rubber teether, which can all help to soothe sore gums. Some parents also recommend gently massaging the baby’s gums to help soothe soreness. Just make sure your fingers are nice and clean, and be gentle!
I’ve also heard chilled fruit is an excellent solution. You could mash up bananas and stick them in the freezer for about 45 minutes to an hour, and let your baby suck on them. Some people also recommend milk popsicles, but that would get messy once it starts to melt! If you want to try that, I’d suggest a bib, or laying down a towel of some sort. Make sure you wipe away any drool on their faces, as too much staying on their skin can lead to irritation.
If it’s really awful, you can use some over-the-counter medications. Be careful with it though. Talk to your baby’s doctor before you do anything, so you can get proper dosage and usage instructions. Medication should always be treated as a last resort, but if that’s what it takes, then that’s what it takes.
Just remember, every baby is different! What works for one might not work for another, and it’s unfair to blame yourself if your first try doesn’t make it better. If you’re really lost or particularly concerned, I’d encourage you to speak to your pediatrician about what you can do. I promise they’ll have good advice and can help more than just a few internet searches.
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