There are few things as distressing as watching your baby begin the teething process. It can be a painful affair, and your poor little one has no idea what is going on. Their little gums are painful, cheeks may be red and inflamed, and they may be drooling more than normal. To parents trying to raise their baby as naturally as possible, the idea of using medicines or topical lotions with harsh chemicals just isn’t right. And it leaves you wondering just what you can do to provide some relief for your baby naturally.
Fortunately, there are several natural teething remedies for baby. Some involve chewing, but if your baby has very sore gums they may simply want something cool to suck on. Try a few different ideas until you find something that suits you and your baby.
Teething babies love to chew on things, and there are some great fabric toys that are specifically designed for young babies to chew. Always choose organic, so that you know the fabric is safe for them.
Try the very popular Keptin Jr organic cotton comforters, made from organic cotton and sheep’s wool. These have long ears, or pointy hats and are absolutely perfect for babies to cut teeth on.
Apple Park and Under the Nile organic toys are also designed for babies to chew. Whichever brand you choose, I highly recommend buying two of the same toy. That way you can have one on the go and one in the wash.
Water filled teethers
There are plenty of water filled cooling teethers available. These go into the fridge, not the freezer, so they’re not too cold for baby to grasp. Make sure that you buy a brand that is BPA free.
Cold fruit or vegetables
My children didn’t start teething until they were on solids, so it made it very easy for us to introduce cold fruits and vegetable for them to gnaw on. Cucumber was a favourite, cut up into sticks and kept in the fridge until needed. Cucumber is soothing and calming, so it’s understandable that it feels good on sore gums.
Whichever fruit or vegetable you choose, ensure that it’s appropriate for baby’s age. You may need to partly cook harder vegetables, so that there is no choking risk.
Baltic amber jewellery is another traditional remedy. I have to admit that they didn’t seem to make any difference to my children, but I know so many parents who swear by them. Be sensible about how and when you use them (i.e. don’t ever leave them on while baby is unattended). Amberease Amber Necklaces look lovely, so they’re worth a try!
There are beautiful wooden teethers available, such as those from Hess Spielzeug or the beautifully simple QToys Assorted Teether, which are coloured with all natural vegetable dyes. Babies and toddlers can happily gnaw away on these and give those new teeth a workout.
Whichever wooden teether you choose, make sure it’s made from sustainable wood, and that the finishes are non toxic.
Try brewing some chamomile tea and freezing it in an ice pop mould, or even just as an ice cube. Chamomile is a traditional teething remedy, too. If you’re breastfeeding, try drinking chamomile tea as this may help your teething baby.
If you are a believer in homeopathy, why not try a remedy such as the Weleda Baby Teething Powder, or the traditional homeopathic teething remedies, chamomilla and belladonna. Depending on the symptoms, you may want to visit a homeopath and get a personalized remedy.
You could also try a natural teething gel, like the one from Hyland’s. You just rub this across baby’s gums.
Frozen Face Washer
Lots of mothers I know swear by the frozen washcloth. Simply soak a washcloth in water and place it in the freezer. Baby can then chew on the cold fabric.
Another alternative is tying a clean handkerchief around an ice cube, and allowing baby to suck on that.
Sophie the Giraffe is the most well known of all the natural rubber teethers. She’s hugely popular for good reason – she’s fabulous. She makes a perfect gift for a newborn, too!
You could also try a natural rubber dummy, like the Natursutten, or Natural Rubber Soothers (who also have a natural rubber teether in their range). Even if your baby doesn’t use a dummy, the rubber is great for chewing. It’s natural latex, and free of nitrosamines, so they’re safe for baby.
Silicone Teething Jewellery
There are a number of Australian brands of silicone jewellery that are designed for babies to chew on, like tiny & i. The jewellery is designed to be worn by mums, but with silicone beads that are soft on baby’s gums. They’re super stylish and you won’t be left with teeth marks in your wooden beads.
There are lots of great options for soothing sore gums without having to resort to Bonjela. See which one you like, and let us know in the comments below!
Please note that if your baby has a temperature or is vomiting, or displays any other symptoms that are concerning you, it’s important that you see your health care professional.
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