Posted in Parenting

Teething Suuuuucks

Well, it turns out that Little Dude wasn’t being cranky for no good reason after all.

It would seem that his (and thus my) lack of sleep and desire to act as my own personal magnet wasn’t due (only) to a wonder week.

Nope, he actually has a genuinely good reason to be crying all the time.

He’s teething.

AGAIN!

It would seem that his body decided that it didn’t need to follow the “normal” teething timeline.  No sir-ee, it’s not enough that he’s grown about 2 teeth per month for the past 5 months (bringing the grand total to 8 teeth right now).  No!  Now, he needs to grow 2 more.  Of course, since the incisors are all grown in, guess what’s coming in now: the freaking pre-molars, that’s what.

Holy crap!  Those little dudes are INTENSE!

You would think that by now, I’d know quite a bit about the signs of teething to recognize that it was happening again.

Well guess what: I actually DID think it was teething at the beginning…and then started to think things through and discarded the thought *facepalm*.

I mean, the little guy was only being a P.I.T.A. (because that is really how it felt after a few nights of not sleeping and not being able to put him down without hearing him scream) at home.  I mean, at daycare he wasn’t top notch, but he wasn’t crying or screaming.  He wasn’t sleeping much or well but he was napping a bit.  At my parents’ place, it was the same thing.  No screaming.  Nope, he  kept that for home.

So I thought: ‘Meh, it can’t possibly be teething.  Besides, the teething timelines indicate that the pre-molars are only supposed to come in between 14 and 18 months and Charles is only (nearly) 11 months’.

OJ5267_TeethChart_mm

But then yesterday morning, after 5 scream-filled and tiring days and two horrible nights in a row (horrible = waking up every 2h because of the little guy), I decided to stick my finger in his mouth to check things out.  Lo and behold I could not only feel that his gums were raised and tender at the exact spot where his lower first molars are set to cut, but I could see the spots where the points of the molars were getting ready to pierce the skin.

Of course, I felt terrible that I hadn’t caught on before and saved my son from some unnecessary pain at night.  But then I reminded myself that no one’s perfect and that I (and my partner) had provided tons of cuddles over the week.

So now, for the second night in a row, the little guy got a dose of Advil before bedtime.  We’ve also been giving him some cold washcloths to gnaw on and are giving him plenty of cold things to eat (peach and apple slices, applesauce, coconut bliss…).  I’ve also gone ahead and ordered a special teething ring that is specifically designed for molars in hopes that it will help ease things along.  I figure that at worst, it won’t help and I’ll be out about twelve bucks.

How did you cope with a child cutting molars?  What were your go-to solutions?

Posted in Parenting

7 + Signs Of Teething For Dummies

You’d think that 7.5 months into this motherhood thing I’d start to recognize the signs of teething BEFORE a tooth actually cuts.  I mean, my son’s first tooth cut when he was a week into his fifth month of life and his most recent one cut yesterday meaning that six pearly whites have sprouted in less than three months.

You’d think that I wouldn’t connect the mental dots after the fact.  Fact is, though, it seems that my “ah ha, it’s teething!” moments don’t ever come during the precursor signs.

Because there are signs!  And  I always notice them.  Just…not in time.

So, in an effort to try to give myself a head start for the next round of teeth, I thought I’d list the signs of teething that can be found in our household.

1.  Chewing on EVERYTHING he can get his hands on.  And by chewing, I mean, sticking the object (or adult finger) in his mouth, biting down hard and pulling the object away with his jaw still clamped down.

2.  Constantly putting his hands in his mouth when there’s no food or suitable toy.

P1030351

3.  Cries his little heart out every time we lie him down on his back.  Seriously.  Every.  Single.  Time.

4.  Clamps down when he nurses.

5.  Wants to nurse all the time.

6.  Fights nighttime sleep as though it was his worst enemy and wakes often during the night.

7.  Will be very whiny unless he is held all the time (but he also wants to play with his toys at the same time).

Of course, this is how things are in our household.  I have, however, heard of other signs of teething which include:

* Excessive drooling (for us, this was a sign for his first teeth, but now that he has more teeth, he doesn’t seem to be drooling as much anymore).

* Fasting (I find that my son wants to nurse more often, not less often.  He also really enjoys eating, notably cold foods).

* Gum swelling and sensitivity (I don’t doubt that my son has this, I just haven’t noticed it).

* Blood blisters

* Tugging on the earlobes

* Loose stools

* Rashes (chin, neck, hands and bum)

Oh!  And for those of you who are wondering, here is a teething timeline.  So far, I’ve found it pretty accurate to determine the order in which the teeth cut (and not the times at which they are supposed to be coming through).

OJ5267_TeethChart_mm
Source: http://www.orajel.com/Products/TeethingChart.aspx

What are the signs of teething that you noticed with your children?

Posted in Parenting

Nursing A Teething Baby

A couple of weeks ago, I encountered on of the many bumps that come along with breastfeeding: nursing my teething son.  Now, you see, I’d already gone down the road of having a teething baby at the breast, the difference is that last time around, my son hadn’t already cut teeth.  This means that while he was nursing (for comfort or for hunger) and gumming down quite hard, it didn’t really hurt.  This time around, though.  Oh.  My.  God.  Ouchies!  He would be happily nursing when all of a sudden…pain.  Two little daggers digging into my tender skin (and I had the teeth marks to prove it!).

I would break the seal forcing my son to unlatch and say “no, don’t bite mommy”.  Then, I would wait until my son realized what was going on (meaning, I would wait the few seconds it took him to get frustrated because he wasn’t attached to my breast anymore) and then let him latch on again.  I did this every time he bit me for three days.

To be honest, at the end of the three days, I was sore, afraid to nurse and pretty much ready to give up on breastfeeding because it didn’t seem like the message was getting through to my son.  Remembering, however, reading about someone else’s woes regarding her breastfeeding situation where someone suggested that it was never a good idea to decide to quit when you were feeling annoyed, I decided to see if there was something else I could do to help things along.  I figured that I would make up my mind when I felt rested and relaxed and could really think through the pros and cons.

I therefore turned to the wonderful ladies in the breastfeeding support group of Baby Center.  They offered many suggestions which I would like to share with you!

1.  Once you say “no” and latch your baby off, give him something to chew on for a couple of minutes.

2. Give her something to chew on 10-20 min before nursing.

3. Don’t act like you’re in pain because some babies find that funny.

4. Put him in his crib or on the floor when you gt him to unlatch and walk out of the room for 30 sec or so that way he doesn’t associate biting with getting extra attention and a fun reaction from mommy.

5. Be consistent with what you say and do when she bites, chances are she doesn’t even realize that she’s biting the first times.

6. Instead of breaking the seal yourself, bring his face close to your breast so that he unlatches himself.

I suspect that what works depends on your baby’s age and personality.

Ironically, since posting that thread, my son has stopped biting (and his top teeth have finally cut today!).

How did you handle nursing a teething baby?

Posted in Infant

Breaking News: Two _ _ _ _ _ For the Price of One!

My son has been particularly fussy over the past week.

Fussy when put down for naps.

Fussy when put down for bedtime.

Fussy when he woke up from his naps.

Fussy when he nursed.

Fussy, fussy, fussy…

He’s also been having trouble transitioning between sleep cycles at naps and has been waking up more often during the night and earlier to start his day (even though he’d been doing great ever since we started Pantley’s Gentle Removal plan).

I’ve been trying to figure out if this was caused by something I could change.  As such, I’ve been taking notes of his days, charting his nursing times, awake times, sleep times.  I figured that perhaps this was all a matter of him being undertired and needing an increase in his awake time.  Or perhaps, it was a problem of him being overtired because he had gone into a cycle of disrupted sleep and wasn’t rested enough.

But then, today, my son ended up unknowingly (or knowingly – who knows?) giving me the answer.  He grabbed my index finger with his two hands and stuck it in his mouth, right atop the sharp edges of his two shiny new teeth!  “Teeth” as in two of them, at the same time…

I’ll post a picture when I can, right now, each time I get him to open his mouth, his bottom gums are either covered in pools of drool and so they mask the barely protruding teeth or he sticks his tongue out which also results in him covering his gums.

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