Teething. It’s no fun at all, for babies and toddlers or their long-suffering parents. But everyone has to go through it, so to help soothe the pain, try these top tips for teething toddlers.
1. Recognise the symptoms
Sometimes it can be hard to know if your baby or toddler is teething, or if it’s something else that is bothering them. The symptoms of teething do vary from child to child, but there are some signs that often indicate teething, especially if they all occur together. Look for the following:
- Dribbling and drooling more than usual
- Rejecting food, especially if they usually eat well
- Putting objects in the mouth to bite or chew
- Rubbing the face or pulling at the ears
- Crying or being irritable
- Waking at night
- A visible tooth coming through, or swollen gums
Unlike babies, toddlers can communicate their needs. If your toddler can sign or say a few words, then that’s really helpful, because they can tell you what’s wrong and where it hurts.
2. Cool it down
A cool teething aid can provide much-needed teething relief for babies and toddlers. Some teething rings on the market contain gel that be chilled in the fridge, and can be a great help. Alternatively, let your child bite on a stick of cool cucumber, or provide a soothing spoon of chilled plain yoghurt. A cool, clean finger on the gums can also help to alleviate the pain.
3. Offer something to bite
When you see your little one biting down on a toy or whatever else comes to hand, it’s obvious that it’s giving them relief. Make sure your child always has something suitable to bite on, whether that’s a purpose-designed teething toy or a hard food like a carrot or breadstick.
4. Give pain relief
If you were experiencing pain, you’d welcome something to numb it. The same goes for your teething toddler, but it’s important to use products that are explicitly designed for children, and to keep to recommended doses. Teething gels provide topical relief, numbing the gums with a mild anaesthetic. Painkillers like children’s ibuprofen or paracetamol provide pain relief and will also bring down a fever.
5. Prevent skin irritation and rashes
Because babies and toddlers often dribble a lot when they’re teething, their skin is vulnerable to teething rashes. Try to prevent this extra level of discomfort by wiping your toddler’s chin regularly. Barrier products such as Vaseline can also be applied to prevent irritation.
6. Take alternative remedies with a pinch of salt
Teething is a really difficult time, so it’s no surprise that there are a multitude of teething-related products on the market. However, there’s little scientific evidence that some of these products, such as homeopathic powders and amber necklaces, are really effective. If you feel it’s working for you and your child, that’s great – but don’t feel pressured into spending money on teething remedies that may only provide a placebo effect.
Meeting your teething toddler’s needs at nursery
When your toddler is teething, it’s really important to know that they’re being well cared for. At Toad Hall, we’ll always put your toddler’s needs first. Read more about how we care for your toddler at nursery.