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Everything you need for a teething baby

Baby teething essentials

Teething is when the first teeth start to come through a baby’s gum line. Early symptoms of teething include fussiness, crying and reddened or swollen gums. Most babies start teething between 5 and 8 months old, but some start teething closer to the 1-year mark. Whatever their age, teething babies need something to alleviate the pain as their first teeth come in.

Since every baby is different, what works for one baby may not work for another. That said, there are some common treatment options to help with teething.

Best teething toys

Smily Mia Penguin Buddy Never Drop Teething Toy

This BPA-free, silicone teething toy hooks over a baby’s wrist and hand without a clip and is designed for babies up to 6 months old. It has a soft texture and promotes healthy oral habits from a young age. Plus, it’s versatile enough for babies who are teething, breastfeeding or starting to suck on things like their fingers.

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Baby Teething Toys for Newborns and Infants

With several fun shapes to choose from, this six-pack of silicone teething toys is made to soothe a teething baby. Each toy comes with multiple grooves and ridges for a sensory experience for young babies. Moreover, the toys are heat-resistant for easy sterilization. They’re also freezer-safe for maximum pain relief to a baby’s gums.

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HAILI XMGQ Baby Teething Toys

These teething toys come in several designs, including a banana finger toothbrush, giraffe shape and different fruit trees. Each shape has its own textures and targets key areas of the baby’s mouth and gums to help alleviate soreness or pain. Plus, the toys can help with motor skill development. Finally, these silicone toys are free from harmful materials like latex, phthalates and lead.

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Infantino 3-Pack Water Teethers

Made for newborns and infants whose teeth haven’t quite come in yet, these unique teethers are textured and make a crinkly noise to capture a baby’s attention. When chilled, they offer temporary cooling relief.

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Infantino Lil’ Nibble Teethers Carrot

Best for infants who are starting to hold things themselves, this teething carrot is soft enough for a baby’s sensitive mouth and textured to soothe the gums. Other options include a pea pod and a fruit kabob.

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Bunny Eggy Teething Toy

Safe, cute and practical, this multipurpose toy helps massage and soothe a teething baby’s gums for quick relief. Besides that, it also works as a toothbrush and rattle to capture the baby’s attention. It comes with a silicone chain and clip that helps keep it in place while the baby uses it.

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Best teething gels

Orajel Nonmedicated Cooling Teething Gel

For 3-month-old babies and up, this non-medicated gel provides an immediate cooling sensation that alleviates soreness and soothes inflamed or irritated gums. It is formulated with safe ingredients and is free from parabens, sodium lauryl sulfates, dairy, gluten and other potentially harmful ingredients.

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Punkin Butt Teething Oil

For those who want something completely natural, this proprietary blend of sunflower, peppermint, chamomile and clove oil is organic and chemical-free. A small dab to the gum line goes a long way to providing pain relief to teething babies.

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Dr. Talbot’s Naturally Inspired Soothing Gel

This option comes with a teething pacifier and a teething gel for relief to sore gums. On its own, the gel offers some temporary relief, but combined with the toy, it can keep a baby comfortable throughout the night. Plus, the gel is made with natural ingredients and is belladonna-free and benzocaine-free.

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Hello Baby Teething Gel with Natural Apple Flavor

This three-pack of oral gels is safe, effective and provides fast relief to young teething infants. It can be a little tricky to apply, but the soothing effect lasts up to 2 hours.

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Mommy’s Bliss Organic Little Gums Soothing Massage Gel

For daytime and nighttime use, this soothing massage gel uses an organic blend of herbs and extracts that are USDA-certified and safe for babies at least 2 months old. The gels are mild and sweet with a chamomile and vanilla flavor.

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Other ways to help soothe a teething baby

Teething toys for babies typically provide pain relief or soothe sore gums. In addition, some toys, especially those made for older infants, can help with motor skill development and provide sensory stimulation.

However, not all babies take well to toys or soothing gels. If nothing else seems to work, try some of these options out instead:

  • Give the baby soft, cold food that doesn’t require chewing. This includes things like yogurt and applesauce. If the baby has its first teeth already and can safely eat it, consider small portions of frozen fruit.
  • For older kids, introduce teething biscuits to them. Be aware that these biscuits may lead to cavities. To prevent this, gently wipe away any food remnants and start brushing their teeth with an age-appropriate toothbrush.
  • If the baby is too young for toys or if the gels aren’t working, let them chew on a soft, frozen cloth. Cold things help decrease gum inflammation and alleviate pain.

Final tips

  • Always choose a toy (or gel) that is appropriate for the baby’s age. If in doubt, check the packaging for age recommendations.
  • Regularly clean and sanitize any toys to prevent bacteria from building up. Don’t be afraid to replace toys if they’re showing signs of degradation.
  • Avoid medicated gels unless a pediatrician or family doctor recommends one.
  • Besides silicone and BPA-free plastic toys, rubber and wooden toys are great options for some babies. Wood, in particular, is more natural and good for babies prone to allergies.
  • When using a teething toy, make sure it doesn’t have any loose parts that the baby could swallow or choke on. Additionally, only use toys made from soft, safe materials that won’t lead to any additional problems or pain.

Interested in learning more about helping a baby during their teething period? Check out this full guide on choosing the right teething toys on BestReviews.


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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.


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