Part 10: Preparing for Teething while Breastfeeding

During this time and for the next six months your baby will be preparing to cut their first teeth. The desire to chew on toys, drooling, and discomfort are par for the course. This does not mean that you need to quit nursing! Some babies will want to nurse more or less depending on whether breastfeeding bothers their gums or helps relieve pain. Every baby is different! When teething is full swing, your baby may be waking more frequently in the night because of the pain. There are ways to help deal with this and it can also help to remember that this phase won’t last forever!

Three Tips for Dealing with Teething While Breastfeeding:

  • Give your baby access to safe, clean, soft rubber toys or “chewing” necklaces to help your baby satisfy their urge to chew. Have plenty on hand in case one falls on the floor and needs to be cleaned or carry pacifier and toy cleaning wipes so you can quickly give it back to the baby to avoid fussing.
  • It is not recommended to give your baby any kind of benzocaine numbing gel due to health concerns and interference with breastfeeding.
  • If your baby tries to bite you while nursing, try offering them a toy to chew on. If you can’t get them to let go, slip your finger next to your nipple and between their gums to loosen their grip. Talk to your lactation consultant about how to prevent biting and avoid injuries.

Information provided in blogs should not be used as a substitute for medical care or consultation.


About the Author

Contributing to this blog is Dr. Kendall-Tackett, PhD, IBCLC and FAPA, and award-winning health psychologist and International Board Certified Lactation Consultant. She specializes in women's health research including breastfeeding, depression, and trauma, and has authored more than 420 articles or chapters, and is author or editor of 35 books.

Learn more about Kathleen!

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