How to Help a Teething Baby Sleep

Did your little one start teething and you are wondering how to help them sleep? Sleep quality is very important for development at all ages. Teething is one of the many things that can compromise your baby's sleep, and just like every other parent we want to make this natural process as easy and comfortable for them as possible. Here’s how to help your teething baby sleep:

Why is my baby teething?

Teething is a natural process in your baby’s development, which happens around 6 months (or even earlier in some cases) and can continue until the baby reaches 2 or 3 years old. Teething is caused by the first set of baby teeth starting to surface through the gum tissue. This causes pressure and inflammation which makes it really uncomfortable for them and can cause some unpleasant symptoms. 

Signs that my baby is teething

  1. Irritable and Fussy: Discomfort during teething may cause increased irritability and fussiness in your baby. 
  2. Swollen or Sore Gums: Swelling or soreness in the gums can be an early indication that your baby's teeth are starting to emerge. 
  3. Flushed Cheeks: If one cheek appears more flushed than the other, it could be a sign of a new tooth emerging. 
  4. Excessive Drooling: Teething often leads to increased drooling as babies produce more saliva than usual. 
  5. Disrupted Sleep Patterns: Teething symptoms, including discomfort and pain, may compromise the quality of your baby's sleep, leading to disrupted sleep patterns. 
  6. Chewing on Objects: Babies may attempt to soothe their discomfort by chewing on various objects. Mild Fever: A mild fever is a common symptom during teething as the baby's body responds to the emerging teeth.
  7. Mild Fever: A mild fever is a common symptom during teething as the baby's body responds to the emerging teeth.

How to soothe a teething baby

As we have just mentioned, babies can soothe themselves by chewing on objects. You can help them with soothing themselves by providing them with appropriate teething toys. Consider using chilled teething rings or other toys made for this purpose. An alternative is to try massaging your baby's gums with a clean finger to help them soothe the discomfort.

Baby laughing and holding baby teether in hands.

Sleep-safe options for teething babies

While certain teethers may be ideal for playtime, they might prove too stimulating when attempting to put your baby to sleep. Here are some recommendations to help calm your teething baby at night:  

  1. Cool and Damp Cloth: Dampen a clean cloth and refrigerate it for 15 minutes. Allow your baby to chew on it as the coldness helps alleviate pain.
  2. Gum Massage before Sleep: Gently massage your baby's gums with a clean finger before bedtime. 
  3. Comfortable Baby Pajamas: Ensure your baby is comfortable, especially with cozy pima cotton pajamas that regulate body temperature and prevent overheating. 
  4. Chilled Pacifiers: If your baby uses a pacifier, slightly chill it in the refrigerator before bedtime. 
  5. Soothing Cool Ring: Some teethers are designed for chilling, providing additional comfort. 
  6. Mesh Feeders: Place chilled mashed fruit into mesh feeders for your baby to soothe them before sleep. Exercise caution to prevent any choking hazards. 
  7. Soothing Environment: Establish a calming atmosphere for your baby by cuddling or playing white noise, making a significant difference in their comfort.


Important: Whenever you’re using chilled items to help your baby relieve teething pain, make sure it’s chilled and not frozen. 

If your baby's discomfort persists despite massages and teething toys, consider consulting and /or visiting a doctor for recommendations on teething gels or other medications.  

It's essential to recognize that every baby is unique, and what proves effective for one may not work for another. Stay patient and experiment with various methods to discover what provides the most soothing relief for your baby during the challenging phase of teething discomfort and pain.

Taking care of your baby’s teeth

Mom taking care of brushing babies teeth.

Initiating your baby's dental care should start even before the first tooth emerges. Establish a routine by gently washing your baby's gums daily with a damp cloth, not only promoting dental hygiene but also aiding in teething pain relief.  As your baby's first teeth typically appear between 6 and 12 months, starting with the lower front teeth, it's crucial to implement proper care:  

  1. Brushing Teeth: Use an infant toothbrush and fluoride-infused toothpaste in an amount smaller than a grain of rice. Brush their teeth gently, transitioning to a child-sized toothbrush and toothpaste at the age of 2. 
  2. Avoid Sleeping with a Bottle: Prevent tooth decay by not allowing your baby to sleep with a bottle. Introduce Fluoride: Introduce fluoride into their diet to strengthen enamel and prevent tooth decay. This can be done by incorporating a few ounces of water into their diet through a sippy cup from the age of 6 months. 
  3. Reduce Sugar Intake: Minimize sugar in your baby's diet, as sugar contributes to tooth decay. Limiting sugar intake aids in the prevention of dental issues. 
  4. Start Flossing: Once their teeth start touching, initiate flossing to maintain optimal oral hygiene. 
  5. Early Dental Visits: Introduce your baby to dental visits early on. Take them with you to your dentist appointments to acclimate them to the environment. 

Implementing these practices ensures a proactive approach to your baby's dental health, setting the foundation for a lifetime of good oral hygiene.


What helps teething pain?
The 3 most common aids for soothing teething pain are chilled teething toys for chewing, teething medications and pain relievers. Consult your doctor about over-the-counter medications.

What helps teething pain at night?
Chilled pacifiers can calm down irritated gum tissue when sleeping. A gentle gum massage can also help relieve some of the discomfort to help your baby sleep, as well as cuddling, which helps soothe your baby.

Do babies sleep more when teething?
Increased sleeping isn’t a symptom of teething. However, teething babies can sleep more if one of their symptoms is fever, which can make babies sleepier.