Teething is a dreaded time for many parents. The arrival of your child’s first teeth is usually accompanied by red or swollen gums, excessive drooling, and a rash around the cheeks and face. The discomfort experienced by children teething also leads to difficulty sleeping, and generally being irritable and unsettled. This is all hard on your child, as well as being hard on you, the parents! Here are some tips for making teething easier on everyone:

1. Provide Teething Rings or Other Toys:
Giving your child something to bite on can help soothe their gums during teething. Solid, silicone-based teething rings are better than the liquid-filled ones as these can leak. You may want to put the teething ring in the fridge for a while before giving it to your child as the coolness will also help soothe the gums. Do not, however, put it in the freezer as this can hurt your child’s gums.

2. Give Chilled Foods:
Sometimes teething diminishes your child’s appetite. Providing soft, chilled foods such as yogurt, may help soothe their gums and encourage them to eat. Some parents also give children pieces of hard, cold vegetables like carrots or cucumber to chew on. These can work well to soothe their gums, but your child should always be supervised while eating these to make sure they don’t choke.

3. Try Alternative Remedies:
There are lots of teething remedies out there. Some contain a numbing gel to ease the discomfort of teething. However, these gels aren’t usually that effective and some of them even contain sugar. You may want to ask other mothers, or ask your dentist, if there are any natural remedies they would recommend. While these don’t work for everyone, they are often better than other gels and treatments that contain preservatives, chemicals, and sugar.

4. Start Taking Care of Their Teeth:
Once your child starts teething, it’s time to think about dental care. You can begin cleaning their gums even before their first tooth appears. After each feeding, wipe their gums with a warm, wet washcloth or piece of gauze. You can also buy rubber devices that fit over your finger, made specifically for cleaning your child’s gums.

5. Make a Dental Appointment:
Your child should have their first dentist appointment by the age of one, or after the appearance of their first tooth. Find a dentist that specializes in family dentistry, if yours doesn’t. By taking your child to a dentist that is familiar with family dentistry, you’re setting them up for a good first experience with a dentist!Teething can be an unpleasant time, but it’s important to remain as calm as possible. Remember, it will soon be over, and your child will have a full set of healthy teeth!Book your child’s first dental appointment with Willow Dental–we offer family dentistry services to meet your needs. We are experienced in providing effective dental treatment for infants, children and teens in a welcoming and child-friendly environment.