How to Soothe Teething Baby During Weaning
In the early days of having a baby it can feel like there’s a new milestone every day. The first time they smile, the first time they laugh, and the elusive first tooth. This is one milestone you’re sure not to miss, usually because there’s some discomfort that comes with it. All at the same time as weaning baby, it’s a busy time for sure.
The typical teething baby age ranges between five to seven months, erupting with the bottom front teeth. Although it’s super cute for photos with all those teething baby gums, it can be less enjoyable when it comes to weaning, and this is where you find yourself.
But first, is my baby ready to wean?
Introducing your baby to food is known as the weaning process. This is typically around six months old, as advised by the NHS. Weaning baby at 4 months old is not advised by the NHS, but speak to your GP or caregiver if you’re concerned.
It’s suggested that baby should be introduced to a varied diet gradually, this often complements breast milk or formula milk. However, one of the challenges around weaning is that it often coincides with teething. This means that your little one might be suffering with teething symptoms. If you find yourself furiously googling ‘what to feed teething baby with no appetite’ or ‘teething baby not eating 5 months’ (some of the most commonly googled teething questions), you’re not alone.
How to soothe teething when weaning
Teething can be a difficult time for both babies and parents, but here are some tips to help soothe your teething baby:
- If your baby is suffering with teething pain, or has swollen gums, you can massage teething baby gums. Just a gentle clean finger can help to relieve discomfort.
- Offer a teething toy. There’s so many cute teething toys in the market in trusted places like Boots. Failing that you can freeze a clean washcloth to give your baby – but avoid giving them ice-cold items, instead make sure it’s chilled but not frozen.
- Give baby pain relief medication: If your teething baby is in discomfort, over-the-counter pain relief medication specifically made for infants, such as teething gel or teething granules, may help.
- Offer baby a cool drink, you can include a clean wet washcloth to suck on too.
- Offer a safe and appropriate teething ring – ones that can be chilled in the fridge can offer extra relief. Look for items that are BPA-free and non-toxic, you may also want to avoid melamine items too.
- Distract your teething baby with play. Keeping them happy and engaged with play can help take their mind off the discomfort. If you’re struggling at mealtimes, try the Thomas Track plate or Hot Wheels Munchy Play kids’ plate – 97% of parents say it helps make mealtimes more enjoyable.
- Offer extra comfort and cuddles. Teething can be a trying time, so offer plenty of comfort, cuddles, and love to help with soothing teething pain.
Of course, every baby is different and will reach teething milestones at different stages. What works for one may not work for another. If you're concerned about your baby's teething or nutritional intake, always contact your GP or a professional caregiver.
Signs that my baby is teething
Parents have an innate way of knowing when their child is going through milestones such as teething. However, here are some typical teething symptoms in babies to look out for. Some may apply more than others, or not at all:
- Drooling: Usually a common sign, babies may drool more than usual during the teething process.
- Loss of appetite: Some babies may turn down food and drink
- Chewing: Babies may chew on toys, fingers, or other objects to relieve discomfort in their swollen or sore gums.
- Irritability: Teething can cause discomfort and pain, leading to fussiness and irritability. This might happen at mealtimes or throughout the day.
- Sleeping unrest: Teething can interfere with a baby’s sleep, especially if they are in pain or discomfort
- Swollen sore gums: before the tooth pushes through, teething gums can appear red and swollen
- Low-grade fever: Some babies may experience a low-grade fever during the teething
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