Teething Remedies: What Worked and What Didn’t

The Teething Struggle

Oh, teething! Every parent’s worst nightmare. In recent weeks it’s been our biggest struggle. My Moo started getting her teething early at around 3 months and the pains have come in waves since then. We can go a solid week straight with no issues but then the crankiness kicks in. She starts waking up during naps and she screams. She screams and screams and holds the side of her face. It’s really heartbreaking. Unfortunately, maybe because she did start on the early side, most of the advice I’ve read or been given hasn’t helped at all. Here’s three remedies that didn’t work and three that did.

What Didn’t Work :


It seems crazy. These things are specifically designed to help with teething but she couldn’t care less. When all this started I went out, filled with good intention and bought her a bunch of teethers. The look she gave me when I tried to give it to her was priceless. Maybe it’s because she’s exclusively breastfed and she couldn’t imagine anything else going in her mouth but it just wasn’t happening.



Cold Things 

Many people suggested this one to me. Put the pacifier into the fridge and the cold rubber will soothe the gums. They can gnaw it too if they’d like. This was a no-go. She hardly ever took a pacifier since she’s been born and refuses to start now. Also in this category falls the damp, cold washcloth and the chilled spoon.


She hates this one! Some babies like pressure against their gums while they teethe so many recommended trying to gently rub her gums (with clean hands, of course) around the area where the tooth is coming in. This didn’t work at all for us. It just increased her discomfort.


What Helped :

Baby Orajel Naturals

Specifically the Naturals one! Using benzocaine on babies is not recommended and can cause really unfortunate side effects. This brand is homeopathic and comes in 2 formulas, daytime and nighttime. The nighttime one doesn’t actually put her to sleep but it dulls the pain enough that she can relax and drift off if she’s already tired. This one is also belladonna free so yay for that! 

OTC Pain Medication

Tylenol has been a lifesaver some days. Talk to your doctor before you give it to your baby because the dosing for children under 2 is based on weight and your doctor will know what is appropriate. On days where she’s been screaming and is obviously is in a lot of pain, a little Tylenol can be just the thing she needs to ease the aching.


Hand Chewing

It’s the only thing she’ll actually chew. It started with gnawing on her father’s thumb and graduated into trying to bite the hands of anyone who holds her. Our hands can more easily mold to her gums than plastic teethers so that could be why she’ll only chew on us. The day she discovered she could bite her own hand was a game changer. Life got a little easier after that.


I’m hoping as she gets bigger she’ll grow more receptive to teething toys but in the meantime I’m ready with the teething gel. What have you tried for your baby? Did any one particular teething remedy help more than others? 




One Sage Mama

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