Pregnancy Guide
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Tips for helping a teething baby

Teething can be distressing for some babies, but there are ways to make it easier for them.

Every baby is different, and you may have to try a few different things until you find something that works for your baby.

Teething rings

Teething rings give your baby something to safely chew on. This may ease their discomfort and distract them from any pain.

Some teething rings can be cooled first in the fridge, which may help to soothe your baby's gums. Follow the instructions that come with the ring so you know how long to chill it for. Never put a teething ring in the freezer as it could damage your baby's gums if it gets frozen.

Also, never tie a teething ring around your baby's neck, as it may be a choking hazard.

Teething gels

Teething gels often contain a mild local anaesthetic, which helps to numb any pain or discomfort caused by teething. The gels may also contain antiseptic ingredients, which help to prevent infection in any sore or broken skin in your baby's mouth.

Make sure you use a teething gel specifically designed for young children and not a general oral pain relief gel, which is not suitable for children. Your pharmacist can advise you.

It's best to talk to your pharmacist or GP before using a teething gel for babies under two months old.

If your baby is chewing

One of the signs that your baby is teething is that they start to chew on their fingers, toys or other objects they get hold of.

If your baby is six months or older, you can give them healthy things to chew on, such as raw fruit and vegetables. Pieces of apple and carrot are ideal. You could also try giving your baby a crust of bread or a breadstick. Always stay close when your baby is eating in case they choke.

It is best to avoid rusks because nearly all brands contain some sugar. Avoid any foods that contain lots of sugar as this can cause tooth decay, even if your child only has a few teeth.

Paracetamol and ibuprofen for teething

If your baby is in pain or has a mild raised temperature (less than 38C), you may want to give them a sugar-free painkilling medicine that has been specifically designed for babies and young children. These medicines contain a small dose of paracetamol or ibuprofen.

Children under 16 years old shouldn't have aspirin.

Always follow the dosage instructions that come with the medicine. If you are not sure, ask your GP or pharmacist.

Comforting a teething baby

Comforting or playing with your baby can sometimes distract them from the pain in their gums.

Preventing teething rashes

If teething is making your baby dribble more than usual, gently wiping their face often may help to prevent a rash.

Caring for your baby's new teeth

You'll need to register your baby with a dentist when their teeth start coming through - find a dentist near you.

Start brushing your baby's teeth with fluoride toothpaste as soon as their first milk tooth breaks through.

Last Updated: 08/11/2017 13:29:21