Teething rings

Function is more important than form when it comes to teething rings. Opt for a ring with parts that easily fits into Baby’s mouth. A popular product for babies old enough to hold them and enough mouth power to make them work is the rattle-shaped teether with a vibrating, gum-soothing yellow star on top. At my baby’s play group, these were all the rage around 6 to 9 months of age.

It’s not recommended that you actually freeze teething rings, because they could burst, releasing the water or gel, or become too hard to give baby any relief. You can also fashion a cool pain reliever of your own by freezing a damp baby washcloth or by wrapping a single ice cube in a washcloth and securing it with a rubber band or hair band. (In our house, we called this “making a ghost,” because that’s what it looks like. Don’t let Baby use it unattended.) For an older teether, a Popsicle could be a soothing treat. Our son, now a toddler, loves small chips of ice.

My son actually chipped or ground down a bottom tooth chewing on something, so don’t assume every hard object is fair game. (His dentist agrees with our suspicion that he chipped it on a hard-spouted sippy cup, and after that we stuck with soft-spouted models by Avent and Gerber.)

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