Your baby will begin teething around 4 to 7 months of age, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics' HealthyChildren.org. In addition to general discomfort, your baby might also have trouble falling asleep or following regular sleeping patterns. In order to bring your child relief, it is important to understand how you can target the cause of the sleeping problems and learn how to comfort your child safely.
The Medline Plus website indicates that sleeping problems are a symptom of teething, along with irritability and frequent drooling. In addition to having difficulty getting comfortable enough to fall asleep, your baby’s sleeping patterns might be completely disrupted due to increased wakings at night. This is due to your baby experiencing pain or often needing to suck on something to help relieve the discomfort.
You can help soothe your baby’s teething pain by rubbing and massaging his gums. HealthyChildren.org also recommends offering a rubber teething ring and talking to your baby’s doctor first before using pain reliever medications. You can help your baby fall asleep easier by making bedtime as comfortable as possible, despite the teething pain. Follow a soothing bedtime routine that relaxes your baby and signals that it’s time to sleep, like giving him a bath and reading him a story.
Although giving your baby a bottle might help to keep her calm, child development experts at the Kids Health website warn against putting your baby to bed with a bottle. Over time, the milk or juice that pools in her mouth as she falls asleep can lead to cavities and tooth decay. Try offering a pacifier instead, or a bottle filled with water if her doctor thinks it will help.
While a low-grade temperature could be a sign of teething, any temperature higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit could be a sign of illness. Additionally, some babies go through the teething process with no apparent symptoms, so if your baby has problems sleeping or a fever but no other teething signs, talk to her doctor about what else could be causing her symptoms.