When you become a parent, you don’t really think about lack of sleep and the horrors of sleep deprivation. You’re caught up in the wonderful world of your new-born baby or babies. And that’s just as it should be.
Once your baby reaches the age of 6 months and beyond, it is not uncommon for you to start yearning for more sleep! When your baby starts waking up frequently due to teething or other causes, you start sifting through parenting magazines, reading books, and buying anything that can help soothe your baby’s teething pain, so they can sleep better and consequently help you rest better at night. You probably feel so sleep deprived that you would do anything and everything to get it.
That’s why we’re here to share some of our top tips to help your little one sleep better, even when teething, which can help let you get some much-needed shut-eye.
Taking Regular Naps
Some babies start sleeping well and continue to do so, while others start well and then stop sleeping well. The secret of getting your baby to sleep through the nights are their daytime naps. If your baby doesn’t have good naps throughout the day, they go to sleep overtired at night which can result in them waking often. Adding teething into the mix can mean when they wake in the middle of the night, they’re likely to also be in discomfort.
To get your baby used to napping, look out for their ‘tired signs’ – when you see them yawning or rubbing their eyes, put them in their cot in total darkness with blackout blinds/curtains, and play a soothing melody. If teething discomfort is putting a stop to your baby being able to nap, give them a chilled teething ring or other gentle teething soother shortly before nap time.
If you’re struggling to get into a napping routine, this ‘spaced soothing’ method may help:
- Listen for quiet gaps and leave them to settle themselves. If they are making any rhythmic sound “Mmm, arrr, bbbaabba”, this is them trying to settle themselves.
- Respond if they become upset.
- Soothe them by stroking, patting, or rubbing them for a few minutes until they’re calm. Cuddle if needed then leave the room again.
- Do the same at night.
Soothe Painful Gums
If teething is stopping your baby from sleeping well, then soothing their painful gums is key to allow you and your baby to both get some sleep. Soothing gums with teething gel during the daytime can help reduce swelling and take the heat off the gums, so discomfort is lessened which will help. Offer them a cool teething ring to bite on during the day and before bedtime to help them be able to drift off easier, and your baby’s gums can also be soothed by rubbing a clean finger over them.
Keep Your Baby Comfortable
Just like with us adults, if babies are feeling uncomfortable, they won’t be able to sleep well, and it’s not just the cutting of teeth themselves that causes discomfort during teething. Drool is a lot more common when teething, so making sure your babies face is kept dry will help stop sore rashes from forming on their face. You may also find that your baby’s nappies are more frequently dirty whilst teething, so making a couple of extra checks on nappies to make sure they’re clean and comfortable can help them to sleep better.
Things to Remember
The first tooth cut can be an exciting milestone but may also be painful. The good news is that your little one doesn’t have to suffer, and you can get some sleep. With the help of the tips that we’ve listed, you can help your baby get through teething and sleep through the night with minimal discomfort. The more sleep they get, the more sleep you get. It is common for the first few teeth to be the most painful, however, as your baby grows, it may become easier to distract them as you find what works best to soothe their discomfort.