Crankiness, tears, and lots of drool can make teething a stressful experience for parents, caregivers, and babies alike.
How to Know Your Baby Is Teething
Is your baby over 4 months old and showing signs of the following?
- A slight temperature (less than 101 F)
- Gnawing or wanting to chew on hard things or hands
- Rubbing their cheek or pulling their ear
- Changes in eating or sleeping patterns
After checking with your pediatrician to rule out any other health issues, it may be that your baby is teething. The teething phase can last anywhere from a week to a few months and can be incredibly frustrating. We've outlined some tips to help you win at mealtime during this challenging phase.
5 Tips to Win at Mealtime When Your Baby Is Teething
1. Stay Consistent with Mealtimes & Offer Foods They Like
Stay consistent with feeding your little one a healthy assortment of meals and snacks they like. Now is not the time to be adventurous with their food. Their mouths hurt, they are cranky, and they just want what they like. Offer them healthy choices you know they enjoy. Now is not the time to introduce new foods.
2. Choose Softer Foods
It hurts to eat, so stick to soft foods, purées, smoothies, and homemade juices. Foods chosen should be appropriate for the age of your child. Some suggestions include baked yams, avocados, scrambled eggs, and green smoothies packed with spinach, kale bananas, flax seed, and pineapple.
3. Don't Be Alarmed If They Are Not Eating Much
It is completely normal for teething to affect your baby's eating habits. Their little mouths are hurting and they may not feel like eating. They may lose weight and put it back on once the phase is over. If you are worried, check in with your pediatrician.
4. They May Drink More Milk than Normal
Don't be surprised if your baby or toddler only wants milk. Whether nursing, on formula, or regular milk, it's normal for kiddos to drink more during their teething phases. Milk helps to hydrate them and provide calories until they can eat again. Remember, they are achy and want comfort. Once the phase is over, they will go back to their old appetite.
5. Remember to Breathe
Your baby is healthy and growing and that is something to be grateful for. If you are feeling frustrated or stressed, just breath and remind yourself that this phase will pass.