Teething can be painful for your baby.

Teething Ring Substitutes

by Brandy Burgess

Teething rings are often the go-to item when parents try to relieve their baby’s aching gums, though experts recommend a solid ring rather than one filled with liquid, as these can leak. Some teething tots don’t like chomping down on teething rings, but will take a frozen washcloth in a minute. Others prefer a tasty treat that doubles as a chew toy. If you have a fussy baby who won't take a teething ring or you don’t have a ring available, many alternatives can ease baby’s pain. Cold spoons, wet washcloths and frozen bagels can help keep a soon-to-be toothy grin on your baby’s face.

1. Frozen Bagels

Bagels are not just good with cream cheese, but are also mouth-watering when frozen -- at least in your baby’s opinion. AskDrSears.com recommends giving teething tots frozen foods such as bagels and bananas to bring comfort to aching mouths. Parents should carefully supervise their toddler to prevent accidental choking on large pieces of food that can break off. Frozen bagels and other frozen treats should be large enough so they can't be swallowed. Keep in mind, though, that sweet foods should be given sparingly, as they can promote decay in those growing teeth.

2. Cold Spoons

Babies will chew on anything and everything to relieve the pain that has transformed them from angels into teething monsters. Pediatricians such as Dr. William Sears recommend the use of cold spoons to relieve the pressure and pain of teething. Rub a cold spoon over your baby’s gums, applying gentle pressure to temporarily numb the pain. Don't let your baby grab the spoon because she could hurt herself.

3. Wet Washcloths

Wet or frozen washcloths have been used for years by frustrated parents of teething children. Teething tots often love frozen washcloths because they are soft on sensitive mouths and help to slightly numb the gums as they thaw. The KidsHealth website suggests placing a wet washcloth into the freezer for 30 minutes before handing it to your baby to enjoy. Always give the teething cloth a good wash before every use.

4. Cold Foods

The Mayo Clinic suggests cold foods that your child can suck on or gnaw, such as cucumbers or carrots. Supervise your child when she has these foods, though, to prevent her choking on small pieces. Cold fruit puree is also a cool treat that can help eliminate some of your teething baby’s distress.

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