February 14, 2011

Calm-O-Mile: for Teething Babies and Tense Moms

Recently, I've had a several clients with teething troubles. Fairly traumatic troubles. Troubles as in the I-haven't-slept-he's-comfort-nursing-every-hour-I-have-a-migraine-my-shoulders-feel-permenently-bowed-what-was-my-name-again? kind of troubles. It really struck me as ironic how much attention we put into the pregant mother in terms of massage, and so relatively little into the issues of the new mother as affected by her rapidly growing infant. I can help the mother through massage, but the effects of massage will not "stick" well if she does not get proper rest.

Thus one of the favorite teething remedies I've come across which is beneficial for both mothers and teething babies is chamomile. Most of us are most familiar with chamomile as a calming tea, or as part of another relaxing tea like the famous Sleepy Time. But chamomile, an aromatic perennial dating back to the time of the Ancient Egyptians, can actually have many more calming, anti-spasmodic, and anti-inflammatory effects both internally and topically.

Some of my favorite ideas for using chamomile as a teething aid (other than the mother drinking copius amounts herself) come from http://www.familyherbalremedies.com/ and include:

1. Chamomilla Homeopathic: tablets of 6X strength can help babies calm down, sleep better, and wake up happier. Any whole food or health food store should have tablets like these made by trusted companies such as Hyland, etc.

2. Chamomile Tea: especially when frozen into popsicle form (the cold soothes and the herb calms).The website also suggests making the chamomile tea fairly strong, and gives suggestions on water-to-herb ratios.

3. Chamomile Chews: Soak a clean cloth in chamomile tea and give it to baby to chew on for tooth pain.

Most mothers and researchers comment that teething babies are all different, and chamomile might work better for some than others. On the other hand, the delivery method (e.g. cold chew, warm tea) seems to also make a difference, so giving chamomile a try in more than one fashion can definitely be worth the effort!


Heather said...

Thanks for the great tip. I knew that Chamomile helps you sleep but I had no idea it could soothing teething.

Lynna Dunn said...

You're welcome, Heather. I was pretty excited to find this out myself, before (rather than after) having a teether.