The other day, I noticed that my baby was drooling a lot more than normal. Unfortunately for us, whenever there is stuff coming out of our baby’s mouth, it is usually spit up from her last feed, which is not particularly fun for me to see. Why is that? Well, here I am, working my ass off to pump milk 6-7 times a day for the last 14 weeks, and to see that precious liquid gold get spit up hurts my heart… Or should I more accurately say, my breasts! So drool is just something a bit different. In addition to that, I also noticed that when I nursed her, she seemed to be latching and unlatching a bit weird. It was just different than what I was used to seeing. And like clockwork, my Cleo rep send me an article to prepare myself for what to expect for pre-teething.
Pre-teething tends to happen somewhere between 2 to 4 months. This is not necessarily the teething stage, which tends to start around month five or six of a baby’s life. Pre-teething, just as it sounds, precedes actual teething. Your baby’s mouth is starting to get ready for the teeth to grow in, and with that comes a lot of excruciating pain for your tiny little human. That excruciating pain is going to manifest itself in a lot of screaming and crying that is going to seem a little bit out of the nowhere. So I went and disinfected her silicone teething toys, froze a few, and offered them to her. As with most new things, she kind of looked at the first teething toy skeptically and was slow to accept it. But gradually, she has learned to suck on it. And I knew that pre-teething had really begun when one afternoon, out of nowhere during her nap, she started screaming and crying nonstop. Nothing would sooth her. Holding her didn’t help, singing and talking to her didn’t help, and she clearly was not hungry. She just needed to be soothed because of the pain in her gums. She accepted some of the teething toys for a little bit, and eventually I just offered her my boob… Because access to the boob is just comforting to a teething baby.
We have been extremely lucky so far in that our baby is always predictable when she cries. She has a specific cry for hunger. She has another cry for attention. She has a faux cry for hunger. But with teething, that would be a very different territory for us to understand and to help with. And so, the adventures of parenting continue.