Being a new parent can be a daunting experience. But none more so than when the screaming suddenly occurs during teething – many parenting mistakes can be made during this time, so keep reading if you are ever thinking about popping that teething ring into the freezer!
Some time back we asked What would you do differently if you had your time again as a new parent? And in hindsight, teething time is probably one of those times we wish we had been better prepared for.
Bringing baby home from hospital and learning all those new things which no book had ever prepared you for, is a frightening and wonderful experience for most mums and dads. Everything is new, and scary, and exciting, and beautiful.
Until teething starts!
Generally we found that the trouble started any time after about three months of age, and could continue up to around 12 months of age.
While getting those adorable little chompers is an important milestone in every child’s life, the eruption of those first teeth (generally the two middle bottom ones come first) are accompanied with much drooling, face rashes, sleeplessness, gum swelling, a LOT of irritability, and did we mention screaming!
Baby may not want to eat, sleep, or be interested in any of the normal activities you have taken for granted up until now. And the tiny wounds in the gums may also set off a mild fever and runny nose.
Thankfully, none of these are generally serious and baby will get through this time. It is the parents who will be stressing out, worried that something terrible is wrong, and wondering if their child is normal. They may even start to question their own parenting skills.
It is about this time that many parents discover teething toys for babies and baby teething rings made from a variety of materials including natural rubber, latex, plastic, and food grade silicone, to name just a few. All are designed to soothe baby’s tired, sore gums during this difficult stage in a young family’s life.
Some are hard, many soft, while others are filled with a sterile water or liquid solution which are designed to be cooled in the fridge before use for additional soothing qualities.
The problem occurs when frantic parents don’t read the labels correctly and place the toys and rings in the FREEZER before giving it to baby. The Mayo Clinic is just one of many health organisations to warn against this practice.
While a baby-safe object cooled in the fridge can be soothing on the baby’s gums, a frozen object could be too hard and may be harmful to their gums and skin. And once it is frozen, some materials tend to become hard and brittle, making them more liable to break apart or leak liquids.
While parents are limited by what medication they can give baby, it is suggested you talk to your health professional or pharmacist to see what over the counter medications and gels are currently recommended to assist with relieving pain.
Some considerations we look at when purchasing any teething products:
- check for any small beads or decorations which could come loose and cause harm to baby
- read up on what liquid is used in any teething rings. While many mention sterile water, others do not, and we are always conscious of any that might break and cause some unknown or dangerous chemical to be ingested by baby
- avoid any toys or rings which contain BPA, phthalates, or other dangerous chemicals, either in the object or used to coat or paint it.
Other options for concerned parents:
- because cold is soothing on their gums, a clean, cold washcloth can often be a great substitute
- if they can manage it, we often found a hard biscuit, or chilled and peeled cucumber to be soothing.
We would encourage all would-be parents to have this discussion with their health professional or pediatrician before teething commences, so as to be led by them in regards to currently recommended procedures, products and medications.
If you found today’s post: ‘Do You Freeze Your Baby Teething Ring‘ of some assistance, why not also check out ‘The benefits of letting kids engage in sensory play‘. And don’t forget to subscribe if you haven’t already, so we can keep you updated in the future with more great posts.
Living each adventure,
Christine and Trevor
ONLINE FASHION STORE
Empowering people to live a healthy, authentic and fulfilling, personal and business life.
Adelaide, South Australia.
All photos above are of the Little Wishes 3 Pack Water Filled Teether pack available through Woolworth’s stores (Australia) and have been safely used without incident.
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DISCLAIMER: This article is written for informational purposes only and is based on Christine and Trevor’s own life experiences. No food featured on this site should ever be consumed or handled if known or suspected allergies exist. Nothing featured here should be taken as medical, professional or legal advice. It is always recommended that you consult the appropriate professional before changing any routine or adopting any new procedure. We provide relevant links in each post to services or products of relevance to that topic. Many are unpaid links, while others may be affiliate links. They are included because of their relevance above all else.