Getting those first teeth can be quite painful for your baby. In this post I’ve gathered 8 natural remedies that can help relief your little one of their teething pain.
It’s been months since my daughter’s last tooth arrived, but we have not forgotten the horrors that such a tiny little milk tooth can bring along when it decides to pop out of hiding. It’s by no means a pleasant experience and causes a lot of discomfort and it kept my little one up many nights.
I know there are different medications and over-the-counter ointments which you can get to help relieve your little one of her pain, but I much prefer handling it without. Though the discomfort is obvious it will pass – even if we did nothing. Of course I still want to help my baby girl with as much pain relief as possible, so we tried going a more natural way.
Below you’ll find the 8 remedies that helped our little one get some needed relief from her aching gums.
The 8 natural pain reliving teething remedies that’ve worked for us
Keep in mind that these remedies are just what have worked for us. I’m not a doctor. This is simply my own experiences and if you feel any concerns about any of the suggestions don’t follow them – or consult your doctor or another health professional first. What works for us, might not work for you or your little one.
1. Liquorice root
This is by far the remedy that have worked best for us. After advice we decided to hand our little one a whole stick of liquorice root (not the candy) and let her chew on it. It’s by far my daughter’s favourite thing to gnaw on when a new tooth is about to pop up. It’s sweet in taste, can be chewed on forever and is suppose to gently numb the gums.
Just remember only to give your baby long sticks, and not the short ones, so you avoid the risk of her trying to swallow it. After a while the ends get chewed up (like the one in the middle in the photo below), but then you just cut that bit off.
2. Breast milk
There are so many reasons for breastfeeding, and despite what many people think, teething is definitely not a reason to stop. On the contrary, it might be a very good reason to continue. Nursing soothes (most) babies and breast milk even contain pain relieving properties that increases when your baby is teething (pretty awesome, right?). This means that your baby wants to nurse more frequently when she is teething. I know my daughter does! If you’re afraid of your baby testing her new teeth on your breast, you can always pump some milk and make breast milk popsicles a.k.a. momsicles. I have to admit I’ve never tried making them, but some people seem to swear by it.
3. Finger massage
Just gently rub your baby’s aching gums with your (clean) fingers for a minute at a time. This tip might be best for the first few teeth however. I haven’t dared put my fingers into my daughter’s mouth after she’s gotten 8 teeth, but in the first few rounds of teething we did offer her our fingers quite a lot to gnaw and to get a chance to gently press down on the gums, adding some counter pressure – and thereby relief – around the emerging tooth. It seemed to help her a lot – especially around bedtime where she’s fallen asleep with our fingers in her mouth on more than one occasion.
You can also buy a silicone finger tooth brush and gum massager to help out if you prefer. It’s also a great first tooth brush and as soon as that first tooth emerges it’s time to get started with that brushing habit.
4. Anything wooden or made out of natural rubber
Wood and natural rubber are a big hit with teething babies. Just make sure it’s made for this purpose or for preparing food, meaning it’s not full of weird chemicals or has paint that will easily comes off. A wooden spoon and a natural rubber teething toy from Sophie La Girafe have been my daughter’s favourites.
5. Hard, unsweetened biscuits and dried bread
Hard biscuits (like teething biscuits) and dried bread can offer your baby some much needed relief when he is teething and can also be a great way to get some food into his stomach – something that otherwise can be quite challenging during the first times of teething.
We bought some biscuits at the at the store the first time, but was surprised to find that most of them contains sugars. For me personally I prefer no adding sugar to anything my baby is going to sit and bite and suck on for longer stretches, so I found some without. I can find the brand anymore, but they look a lot like these teething biscuits from Bickiepegs without added salt, preservatives or sugar. Just remember to make sure that your baby is in an upright position when eating these and keep an eye out for him. Just in case a piece breaks off.
6. Chamomile tea
Chamomile is known to have anti-inflammatory properties, to ease pain and even help with an upset tummy – a common side effect to teething. Just make a cup of chamomile tea using nothing but dried organic chamomile flowers and hot water and let it brew for a few minutes. Let it cool down and give your baby the tea when needed.
We just offer it to our daughter in her cup or on a teaspoon a few times a day, but you could also soak a washcloth in the tea and freeze it and then let your baby chew and suck on it. If you do this, remember to leave part of the washcloth dry so there’s something for you baby to hold on to and make sure you only freeze the cloth for an hour or two. We don’t want your wee one to get frostbite.
7. Frozen bananas and chilled cucumber
You could use a great variety of frozen or chilled fruits and vegetables. They just need to be frozen or at least refrigerated as the point is not only to give your baby something to chew on, but also to numb the gums with the cold.
I only started giving my daughter frozen bananas quite recently as she didn’t like the feeling of cold foods in her mouth when she was younger, but many babies will gladly gnaw away as soon as they start solids.
If you don’t feel comfortable giving your baby whole foods because of the choking hazard, you can blend the banana up into “ice cream” instead or buy a fresh food feeder for babies.
Whenever we’ve been in a position where none of the other remedies were within reach, we’ve luckily had one more trick up our sleeves and that is simply to distract her. Going outside has almost always been a hit, especially now she has gotten older. With all the dogs to look at and people to wave at, there’s simply no time to think about the pain in her mouth.
Being silly and doing fun little activities is also a great way to keep your little one distracted from the discomfort. If you need a bit of inspiration check out these ideas for fun indoor activities for babies.
So that’s it; the 8 different teething remedies that have helped our baby girl get some much needed relief from her teething pain without the use of medications. I hope you can use some of the advice!