Teething, teething, teething. Wow, what an experience! I have been through it with my two daughters, who are now 20 and 15, and am currently dealing with it with my 1 year old son, who did not cut his first tooth until after his birthday! It is as bad as I remember! I lived through it twice and will again. It seems nothing makes our little ones less fussy, or in less pain. That is because there really isn’t anything that works consistently. You can try these recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
- Pressure and massage of the gums with your finger or a teething toy. I have found the ones with “nubbies” work pretty well.
- Cool or cold comfort. The frozen teething rings are great, but they do not stay cold long. Cold wash cloths, or the go-to in our home, an ice cube in a wet washcloth. Hold it to baby’s mouth and let him or her gnaw on it.
- Teething gels are not effective and NOT recommended at all. The gels wash off quickly and do not last a significant period of time. The benzocaine containing gels can also cause a serious medical condition in the blood, depleting the ability to carry oxygen, resulting in death or serious illness.
- Teething tablets are not safe. They contain belladonna, which can also be toxic to babies.
- Tylenol and Motrin are sometimes successful, but it is really hit or miss. Be careful not to overdose or over medicate. Also, important to note is that fever is not a sign of teething. The temperature can be slightly elevated, but not usually higher than 100.3. If your baby has a temperature over 101.0, he or she definitely has a fever and you should consult your pediatrician.
Remember, teething is a developmental process and milestone. We all go through it, and it does get better. Take care until next time.
By: Roger Kirk, Pediatric CRNP at Preferred Medical Group