‘Baby Dude’s Ultimate Teething Toolbox’

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I remember around my ninth month of pregnancy, my husband and I were putting
the finishing touches on Baby Dude’s room, sorting newborn items from everything
else. I took two water-filled teething rings and tossed them into temporary storage.
I even said out loud, “We won’t be needing these for a while.”

Wrong! He began teething at three months old, which apparently is the earliest a
baby can begin the seemingly unfair process of cutting teeth. As I’m writing this,
we can see the outlines of his two bottom teeth bulging under his gums. The rest of
the classic teething symptoms (drooling, fussing, biting and coughing) come and go.
So the water teething rings went into the fridge sooner rather than later, and thus
began Baby Dude’s Teething Toolbox. Over the last couple of months we’ve added
tools, which we rotate to keep the remedies fresh. Here’s a few of our favorites.

  • Cold washcloth. According to the Mayo Clinic, sweeping a clean, damp
    washcloth over your baby’s gums on a daily basis keeps bacteria from
    building up in the mouth. The baby can chew and suck on the washcloth
    for teething relief as well.
  • Frozen breast milk in a Munchkin Fresh Food Feeder. Pour expressed
    milk into an ice cube tray and allow to freeze. Remove the cube, mash it
    up, and put into a Munchkin Fresh Food Feeder for baby to gnaw for
    instant relief.
  • A (clean) finger to massage the gums. Whether it’s his own or some-
    one else’s, he’s not picky.
  • Teething toys. His favorites are Rusty the Robot and Freddie the
    Firefly (who we like to call Larry the Lightening Bug) from Lamaze.
  • A bottle with a chilled nipple or a chilled pacifier. Baby Dude hates
    pacifiers, but he will occasionally chomp as hard as he can on one if
    his gums hurt enough. He does make an exception for the next thing.
  • Amber teething pacifier and necklace. Amber is a natural remedy that
    works by releasing succinic acid when it comes into contact with the
    baby’s gums, relieving pain and swelling. I was skeptical at first, but
    the pacifier, which shipped all the way from Lithuania, works especially
    well for relieving teething symptoms.
  • The First Years Massaging Action Teether. This teething toy and rattle
    in one has different textures on the points of the bright yellow star, and
    when pressed vibrates via an internal battery and massages the gums.
    This was the best eight dollars we ever spent.
  • Munchkin Teething Baby Blanket with Pacifier attachment. We have
    the monkey version, and Baby Dude loves to chew and chomp on the
    bananas. The crinkly textures are a good distraction for fussiness.
  • Humidifier. This is for the cough that comes with teething due to excess
    saliva. We bought a Vicks humidifier similar to this one and it’s helped a ton.

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The last remedy is homemade and comes with a disclaimer: I’m not a doctor, nor
am I providing medical advice. I’m only sharing my experiences and information
I think might be useful to others. Every baby is unique, so what works for my
baby might not work for yours. I encourage you to consult your pediatrician and
conduct your own research.

  • Homemade Teething Oil. I found this recipe on Mommypotamus and it
    works well for us. We use it sparingly and only when all other remedies
    have been exhausted. Clove oil MUST be diluted with a carrier oil, such
    as olive or coconut oil or both (using both will produce a milder flavor).
    .
    Ingredients
  • 2-3 drops organic clove bud essential oil
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil (we use California Olive Ranch extra virgin olive oil)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (we use Vitacost extra virgin organic coconut oil)

Directions

Combine ingredients and test on your own gums to make sure it’s not too strong
(you don’t want it to burn). Once you’re satisfied, pour into a clean container.
Light oxidizes oil, so store it in a brown glass bottle or keep in a clear glass con-
tainer in a cool dark cabinet. To use, shake well, then test the oil again on yourself
(I do this every time with the same batch of oil to make sure). Apply a small amount
to the gums with a clean fingertip. This can be done every 1-2 hours, but we find
it’s not necessary.

We may add to the toolbox, since according to my reading this will last until he’s
three years old (although my hope is since he started early he’ll be finished sooner).
What teething tips and remedies have worked well for you? Please share in the
comments below.

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