Teething is grim – no two ways about it. Often, it’s a case of just gritting your teeth (sorry) and waiting for the little buggers to appear. Nevertheless, there are a few things that help, from the seemingly hokey to the chemical. Here’s what we found effective
- A wet, frozen flannel for your wee one to chew on. Basic, cheap and effective – just wet the flannel, stick it in a plastic bag and bung it in the freezer drawer. Tie a knot in one end to maximize the chewing pleasure. Keep a bagful ready to whip out whenever the red cheeks appear.
- Millions of mothers swear by teething granules, a homeopathic remedy containing Chamomilla that soothes and calms. Try Nelsons Teetha, or Ashton & Parsons (Boots’ own if you’re feeling tight). Good luck getting the granules onto the gums first time. If you manage it though, your baby will be hooked.
- Here’s an even more natural approach: rub any of the following on your baby’s gums to soothe the nerve endings: root ginger, ground cloves, allspice mixed with water to form into a paste, clove oil, or natural vanilla or almond extracts (we think the last two sound nicest). Dilute any herb oils with a bit of olive oil and test them on your own gums first.
- Despite their hokey/surfey/new age appearance, amber teething necklaces are strangely effective. At least, when I bought one for my six-month-old, he stopped waking up in the night. Coincidence? Who cares. And they only cost a tenner on Amazon. Worth a try.
- Not strictly a remedy, but if your baby is refusing to eat (quite common with teething), they might accept yoghurt (or failing that Little Yeo fromage frais), fruit puree or ready-made pouches of food e.g. Ella’s Kitchen. Calories down the hatch = a less fractious being.
- As well as being excellent for your own mouth ulcers, Anbesol is great for teething infants. Rub it on their gums and it numbs them dead.
- If all else fails, as with everything, Calpol and Nurofen are your friends. Get a spoonful down them before bed and you’ll get at least a few hours of uninterrupted sleep – possibly a whole night. Good luck.