Sadly, teething is often underestimated as a sleep disturber. We all
know that it can cause quite some discomfort. But did you realize that
it is one of the main causes for not
having your little one sleep through the night? Or not being able to
Some babies - and their parents - hardly realize their teeth are
cutting through. They just dribble a bit for a while and then suddenly:
a new tooth is there!
For many others, cutting teeth is simply
painful. Apart from straight pain, the
constant pressure on baby's gums can make her restless and irritated.
Because of the discomfort in their mouth, many babies lose their
appetite too. To be precise, they're still hungry as usual, but because feeding is painful - the contact with the (bottle) nipple or the food on the sore gums - they just eat less which makes them seem to have reduced appetite.
And so, directly and indirectly, nights are also affected. The
discomfort often plays
up more than during the day - when there are more distractions and
parent soothing nearby.
Baby teething and sleep
to teething ...
baby who has been sleeping
through the night for a while, can suddenly
start waking up frequently again. This can typically be waking every hour, crying or screaming. This painful waking can have a pattern of occurring for a few consecutive nights, alternating with a few nights of better sleep until the painful tooth erupts.
baby who easily settled for sleep in her cot at night or nap time, can
suddenly take hours to wind down and doze off
Do this with extra care for
your baby's needs right now:
she may need an extra feed - day or night -
her feeds are smaller because of lesser appetite
if you breastfeed, extra (small) feedings are great
to help soothe the pain
she may need extra cuddling and comforting to
help her settle
No need to over-indulge either. Try to strike a healthy balance: remain determined and, when you have looked after her pain and discomfort as much as you could, do not be afraid to stick to the schedule or routine you had before.
The regularity, because of helping her
sleep more, will help overcome a
large part of the discomfort.