Teething is by far the worse experience most parents face with their young tots. The discomfort, irritability and fevers will put even the most seasoned parent to the test. Luckily, we were spared any real issues with teething during my tots first year. His teeth showed up early and came through with very few symptoms. Heck, by 15 months he had all of his teeth, with the exception of his 2nd year molars.
And this, my dear friends, is where THINGS WENT SOUTH.
About two weeks ago I noticed a change in my otherwise pleasant tots attitude. EVERYTHING started to become SO dramatic. If he tripped, he screamed. If he couldn’t turn on the TV, he screamed. If he wanted a toy from the top shelf of his bookcase, he screamed… You get the point.
I chalked it up to the Terrible Twos. After all, his 2nd birthday is fast approaching and its only common for tots to go through a change in personality around that time. But as the week progressed I noticed him getting more and more upset about the slightest things. He’d also hold his head as if he had a headache, and cover his ears as if the noise of everyday life bothered him.
So naturally I took to the internet CONVINCED he was having migraine headaches, or WHO KNOWS WHAT ELSE. You know, because the internet makes a FANTASTIC stand-in pediatrician. I spent a couple of hours that night researching blogs, forums, medical sites and such for an answer. Nevertheless I was left more confused than I was when I started, and decided it was time for a visit to a real doctor. But the next morning, just before I picked up the phone, it dawned on me…COULD HE BE TEETHING?
My husband held him down so Momma (why is it always Momma?) could pry his mouth open and take a peek inside. And sure enough, he had one 2nd year molar breaking through the gum line, while the other three were causing CRAZY swelling and redness. DUH! That’s a parenting moment when I wanted to slap myself on the back of the head.
My poor poor boogie. I jumped into MOM-MODE and (knowing what I was up against) prepared for battle. And though this second week of teething has been pretty miserable, I’d like to think that my efforts to soothe his discomfort has helped…even if its just a little.
-Wet a few washcloths with bottled or filtered water and place them in zip lock bags. Place them in the freezer and offer him one every few hours. The smaller, tot-sized washcloths work best.
-Break out your melon baller and get busy on a watermelon. Store the balls in the fridge or freezer for snacks that will immediately reduce his swelling. Grapes also work well using this method.
-NEVER EVER EVER rub alcohol on your child’s gums. This may have worked 50 years ago, but today WE KNOW BETTER!
-Make your tot a sippy of chamomile tea. This will relax him and soothe him before bedtime/naps. (click here for my recipe)
-When all else fails, and trust me IT’S GONNA FAIL, offer your tot a dose of children’s Tylenol or Ibuprofen. It will ease his discomfort, and you may finally get him TO SLEEP. Remember: NEVER give your tot Aspirin!
So from one tired mom to another, I wish you well in your teething endeavors. Remember that the discomfort will pass, and soon your happy bouncing tot will return to normal.
Covered in drool, and who knows what else,