Teething typically starts around 4-7 months of age and can be disruptive for both babies and parents. Just when you thought you were getting the hang of this parenting thing teething hits. Rest assured, there are plenty of things you can do to bring your baby some relief. Read on to discover the best foods for teething.
What is teething?
Teething is the process of teeth breaking through gums. It usually begins between 4-7 months and last until the final molars breakthrough around 2.5 years of age.
Teething can be stress for both kids (ouch!) and parents. Teething babies are usually irritable, drool a lot, and want to chew on something hard as their teeth erupt. Moreover, it often begins at a time when babies have just started sleeping through the night throwing their sleep into a tailspin and leaving you rather tired.
Symptoms of teething in babies
Signs and symptoms of teething include:
- Fussiness/ irritability
- Constantly putting hands and hard objects in mouth
- Puffy, swollen gums
- Rubbing ears
- Sleep disruption
- Poor appetite
Natural remedies for teething
If you’re in the middle of a teething spell, here are a few natural ideas for easing your child’s pain:
- Gentle gum massage
- Hard rubber teething rings
- Frozen rubber/ silicone teething rings
- Frozen washcloth
- Frozen fruit in a teething pop (see below for more foods for teething)
Some parents use baltic amber teething necklaces for teething, however, amber has not been shown to have an analgesic or anti-inflammatory effect . Furthermore, they may be a risk for strangulation.
Best foods for teething babies
Soft foods are gentle on sore gums and generally less painful during teething spells. That said, many babies like chomping on hard things like teething rings when they’re teething to help teeth come through.
Cold or frozen foods can feel good against inflamed gums, however, they may need to be modified to minimize choking risk. For example, frozen blueberries are a choking risk and should not be served to babies as is but they can be offered in a teething pop like these ones from Munchkin.
Here is a list of the best foods for teething babies:
Cold or frozen foods:
- Plain whole milk yogurt. Option: Sweeten with mashed fresh fruit such as raspberries or banana.
- Low sodium whole milk cottage cheese
- Overnight oats made with whole milk yogurt or kefir, cinnamon, chia seeds and mashed banana
- Homemade mini popsicles made with whole milk yogurt/ kefir and pureed fruit
- Smoothies made with whole milk/ kefir and frozen fruit of choice
- Frozen fruit such as mango or banana served in a teething pop.
- Frozen banana
- Cold watermelon, cantaloupe or honeydew melon spears (seeds removed)
- Scrambled eggs
- Soft, ripe slices of fruit such as peaches, plums, banana, or pears.
- Mashed avocado
- Oatmeal mixed with breastmilk/ formula cinnamon and grated apple (or mashed fruit of choice)
- Chia pudding made with chia seeds soaked in coconut milk or whole milk kefir and mashed fruit
- Soft cooked, steamed veggie spears such as broccoli, carrots, sweet potato
- Mashed beans prepared without salt
- Teething usually begins between 4-7 months and last until the final molars breakthrough around 2.5 years of age.
- Teething babies are often fussy, irritable, drool a lot, and may rub their ears.
- Soft foods are like scrambled eggs and mashed avocado are gentle on inflamed gums.
- Cold or frozen foods can also offer relief from teething pain but often need to be modified to minimize choking risk.
 Nissen, M. D., Lau, E. T. L., Cabot, P. J., & Steadman, K. J. (2019). Baltic amber teething necklaces: could succinic acid leaching from beads provide anti-inflammatory effects?. BMC complementary and alternative medicine, 19(1), 162. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12906-019-2574-9