Try to remember back to the happy days of childhood. Few things existed in that world, compared to the adult worries of bills and responsibilities. However, for young children, the basic human needs of affection, nourishment, and care in large part drive their behaviors. Any disruption to their happy world feels catastrophic to them, especially the intrusion of sharp, uncontrollable pain from incoming teeth. When attempting to sooth a teething young one, who is in the midst of an ear-shrilling fit of pain, it is important to try to return the child to a sense of normalcy.For more information on this click here.
Step One: Reassurance
Children feed off the energy of their surroundings. Teething triggers a sense of physical alarm for children as their bodies register the pain. During this heightened state of alarm, it’s especially important to balance your own emotions when interacting with them.
Stressful reactions in yourself will likely only trigger emotional alarm in the child, who could begin a whole new level of crying when this is added to the physical duress. The child will likely require assistance coping with the pain, and will also need emotional nurturing to help soothe the child. Provide emotional reassurance and nurturing by remaining calm.
Step Two: Help Relieve the Pain
Medication and Oral Gels: One of the ways to help sooth a teething child’s tantrum is to help alleviate the physical pain being experienced. Medication and pain-relieving gels exist for this purpose. However, it is very important to get the dosage correct, and to check with a pediatrician before giving any medication to children. If approved by the child’s pediatrician, be sure to administer the correct dosage of medication, and when applying oral gels directly to the gums with the index finger, be sure to wash your hands first.
Gum Massage: An alternative to administering medication or giving oral pain-relieving gel, is to massage the little one’s gums. After washing your hands thoroughly, turn the facet to cold and allow the cold water to chill your index finger. Then, gently rub your index finger on baby’s aching gums. The coolness and massage may provide temporary pain relief for the child.
Step Three Distraction:
Once you have taken steps to relieve the physical pain, it may be helpful to try to distract the baby’s attention from their aching gums. This may be accomplished through singing, playing together (Peek-a-Boo), or providing a meal/ snack. Depending on the little one’s age, a refrigerated snack may provide the distraction needed for the pain medication or gel to take effect.
It is important to remain calm through the process of trying to sooth the teething little one. Patience and understanding can help soothe the little one, and help baby to feel that the world is returning to a happy-familiar state. Avoid raising your voice or punishing the little one; remember, crying is a healthy reaction to feeling pain. Also, it is important to distinguish between the different types of cries; run through the basic needs checklist to make sure baby is crying about achy-teeth, and not another need, such as the need for a clean diaper.