I know what you are thinking, “The guy who broke his kid’s arm is sharing parenting tips?” What?!
I am not an expert for sure, but that just means I have to try harder to keep my kids out of the ER and DCFS off my doorstep. So I ask a lot of questions when I am at the doctor’s office or talking to “real” experts in child care. That’s where I learned these easy tips for relieving the pain of a slobbering, angry, teething baby.
As you know, having a baby who is teething is not a fun time for anybody involved; parents, baby, siblings, people who can hear him screaming down the street. It’s painful and uncomfortable for the baby, which makes it painful and uncomfortable for the parents.
Kid #3 seems to be sprouting all of his teeth at the same time. We have been back and forth to our very patient doctors at Glenbrook Pediatrics with the concern that it has to be something worse. But it’s not. We just have a toothy, miserable, sad baby.
Now, I love my dad. He is one of the smartest guys I know, however, his suggestion for the pain every single time I talk to him is: “Rub a little whiskey on his gums. I did it to you and it knocked you right out.”
Which my response is always: “Look how I turned out, maybe that’s not the best idea!”
Our doctor Mary Higgins explained to me that in the olden days when I was a baby, there weren’t things like children’s Tylenol to help alleviate the pain, so rubbing whiskey on a baby’s gums was a common practice. Now that medicine has advanced, there are more suitable options that don’t involve boozing up your baby. Unless of course you live in third world country that doesn’t have access to modern medicine. Like Canada . . . America’s hat.
So, if booze is out and your tot is a sad, slobbery mess, what can you do? Freeze stuff. Yup, Dr. Higgins told me that freezing a teething biscuit it a great way to keep the pain down in a baby’s mouth. They can suck and chew on the cold biscuit and it will help with the pain.
Another cool tip from the good doctor was to put a baby spoon in the freezer and then let them suck and chew on that. It will give them the pain relief they are looking for without the hangover.
Freezing stuff is the way to go. Use common sense though. You don’t want a baby tongue stuck to a flagpole, but if they are already chewing on a toy and it looks like something you could stick in the freezer for a few minutes (not too long – don’t want to freeze little fingers) then go ahead, freeze it up and let the pain relief begin.
As far as the whiskey goes, save that for after the baby has finally fallen asleep.
You’ve earned it.