Natural teething remedies for babies
Natural teething remedies for babies
Teething is a significant milestone, but it can also be an uncomfortable or even painful experience for babies, and a stressful one for parents.
Symptoms of teething can last from a few days to a few weeks, and can include;
- Irritability and fussiness: Teething can make babies very irritable and fussy. They may cry more than usual and have difficulty sleeping.
- Drooling: As teeth start to emerge, babies may drool more than usual. This can lead to a rash around the mouth and chin.
- Chewing and biting: Babies may chew on anything they can get their hands on, including toys, fingers, and even furniture.
- Swollen or tender gums: The gums around the emerging teeth may be red, swollen, and tender to the touch.
- Changes in appetite: Some babies may lose their appetite or refuse to eat while teething, while others may want to eat more than usual.
- Ear rubbing: Teething pain can sometimes radiate to the ears, causing babies to rub or pull on their ears.
- Mild fever: A slight increase in body temperature (less than 38°C or 100.4°F) can occur while teething, but if the fever is higher, it may be a sign of something else and you should contact your primary healthcare provider.
It’s important to note that not all babies will experience all of these symptoms and some may have a more difficult time teething than others. If you are concerned about your baby’s symptoms or discomfort, there are several natural remedies that can help soothe teething pain and discomfort.
Cold compresses are an effective and easy way to help relieve teething pain and inflammation. The cool temperature helps numb the gums and reduce swelling, providing your little one with some much-needed relief. There are many ways you can create a cold compress, such as chilling a clean washcloth in the refrigerator or freezer and then giving it to your baby to chew on. Alternatively, you can use a cold spoon, a chilled teething ring, or frozen fruits and vegetables.
If you are using a washcloth, make sure it is clean and free from any detergent or fabric softener residue that may irritate your baby’s gums. Additionally, never leave your baby unattended while they are using any teething aids, as they can pose a choking hazard if it breaks or something dislodges.
Gently massaging your baby’s gums with a clean finger can also provide relief. The pressure from your finger can help ease the pain by stimulating blood flow to the area and releasing endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers. To massage your baby’s gums, start by washing your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Then, use a circular motion to apply gentle pressure to the affected area.
You can also use a silicone gum massager to massage your baby’s gums. These tools are designed to be used specifically for teething and can help provide additional relief. Just make sure to clean the massager thoroughly after each use and replace it if it shows signs of wear and tear.
Chamomile tea has natural anti-inflammatory and soothing properties that can help ease your baby’s teething pain. The tea contains chamomile flowers, which contain compounds that have been shown to have a calming effect on the body. You can brew a weak chamomile tea and let it cool down to room temperature. You can then dip a clean washcloth in the tea and give it to your baby to chew on.
If you prefer, you can also give your baby chamomile tea to drink. However, it’s important to remember that babies under six months old should not be given water, including chamomile tea, as it can be a choking hazard. Always check with your naturopath before giving your baby any herbal tea to make sure it’s safe for them to consume (particularly if they have allergies!).
Clove oil has natural analgesic properties that can help alleviate pain and inflammation. It contains a compound called eugenol, which has been shown to have pain-relieving effects. However, it’s important to note that clove oil should always be diluted before use and should never be applied directly to your baby’s gums.
To use clove oil as a natural remedy for teething pain, mix a drop of clove oil with one teaspoon of a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, and apply it to your baby’s gums with a clean finger. Alternatively, you can mix a few drops of clove oil with water and use it to soak a clean washcloth. Then, give the washcloth to your baby to chew on.
It’s essential to remember that clove oil should only be used in moderation and under the guidance of a healthcare professional. Overuse or misuse of clove oil can lead to adverse effects, including nausea, vomiting, and (in very rare cases of excessive use) liver damage.
Amber Teething Necklace
Amber teething necklaces have become a popular natural remedy for teething pain. The necklace is made of Baltic amber beads, which are believed to release natural oils containing succinic acid. The idea behind them is that the baby’s body heat releases succinic acid from the amber, which is then absorbed into the skin and has a calming effect.
When the beads are in contact with the skin, they can help reduce inflammation, provide pain relief, and promote a sense of calmness. However, there is no scientific evidence to support these claims, and amber necklaces can pose a choking hazard if they break or dislodge. If you decide to use an amber teething necklace, make sure it is the right size for your baby, remove it during sleep, and supervise your baby at all times while wearing it.
Magnesium is a mineral that plays a crucial role in various bodily functions, including bone health and nerve function. It is also believed to have natural pain-relieving properties, making it a gentle remedy for teething pain.
A study published in the Journal of Clinical Pediatric Dentistry found that magnesium supplementation helped to alleviate teething symptoms in infants. The study observed 46 infants between the ages of 6 and 30 months who were experiencing teething pain. The infants were divided into two groups: one group received magnesium supplementation, while the other group received a placebo. The study found that the infants who received magnesium had a significant reduction in teething symptoms compared to the placebo group.
Teething relief powder
Weleda is a natural and organic personal care company that produces a teething relief powder for babies. The Weleda teething relief powder contains natural ingredients such as chamomile, ratanhia, and calendula, which are believed to help soothe the gums and alleviate teething discomfort.
To use the Weleda teething relief powder, you can apply a small amount to your clean finger and massage it gently onto your baby’s gums. Alternatively, you can sprinkle a small amount onto a clean, dry spoon and give it to your baby to swallow.
It’s important to note that while the Weleda teething relief powder is a natural and gentle option, you should still consult with your naturopath before using it on your baby, especially if your baby has any pre-existing medical conditions or allergies. Additionally, you should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for use and dosage, and discontinue use if any adverse reactions occur.
You can purchase Weleda’s teething relief powder here; https://www.weleda.com.au/product/b/baby-teething-powder-oral-powder
Acupressure is a technique based on the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that involves applying pressure to specific points on the body to stimulate healing and alleviate symptoms. Here are some acupressure techniques that can be used to relieve teething discomfort in babies:
- LI4 (Hegu): This point is located in the webbing between the thumb and index finger. Applying pressure to this point can help alleviate pain and reduce inflammation in the gums.
- ST6 (Jiache): This point is located about one finger width anterior to the angle of the jaw. Massaging this point can help relieve pain in the jaw and promote healthy blood flow.
- GB20 (Fengchi): This point is located at the base of the skull, in the hollows on either side of the spine. Massaging this point can help relieve headaches and promote relaxation.
- BL10 (Tianzhu): This point is located at the base of the skull, between the two vertical neck muscles. Massaging this point can help relieve neck tension and promote relaxation.
To perform acupressure on these points, apply gentle pressure with your fingers or thumb and hold for 10-15 seconds. Repeat several times, as needed, throughout the day. Be sure to never apply too much pressure or cause pain.
How long is teething going to last?
Teething symptoms can last for several days to several weeks, depending on the individual baby and the number of teeth coming in. The first teeth usually start to emerge between 6-10 months, with the full set of baby teeth usually coming in by age 3. During this time, babies may experience a range of symptoms, including gum sensitivity and swelling, drooling, irritability, disturbed sleep, and loss of appetite. While some babies may only experience mild discomfort, others may experience more significant pain.
It’s important to note that while natural remedies can be effective for some babies, the quality and strength of natural medicines can vary. If the home remedies aren’t helping, it’s always a good idea to consult with a children’s health naturopath, for more personalised support for teething pain and discomfort. Additionally, if your baby is experiencing severe or persistent symptoms, it’s important to seek medical attention to rule out any underlying health issues.
- American Academy of Pediatrics. (2019). Teething: 4 to 7 months. Retrieved from https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/teething-tooth-care/Pages/Teething-4-to-7-Months.aspx
- Chami, F. (2018). Natural teething remedies for babies. Healthline. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health/parenting/natural-teething-remedies#overview
- National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. (2018). Chamomile. Retrieved from https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/chamomile
- Yarnell, E. & Abascal, K. (2009). Pediatric botanical medicine: Part 1. Alternative and Complementary Therapies, 15(6), 292-298. doi: 10.1089/act.2009.15605
- Acupuncture in Medicine. (2018). Acupuncture for teething: a narrative review of the literature. Retrieved from https://aim.bmj.com/content/36/3/139
- Weleda. (n.d.). Weleda Children’s Teething Powder. Retrieved from https://www.weleda.com.au/product/c/childrens-teething-powder