If you follow me on twitter, you’ve noticed me on there quite a bit lately, imploring other moms to help me figure out what happened to my good little sleeper.
From Thursday through Saturday nights, Hailey was up all night. Well, more accurately, she kept waking up every couple of hours. She didn’t wake up screaming, but woke up with the saddest whimpers. She looked like she is trying to sleep so badly, but that something was making her uncomfortable enough that sleep wasn’t possible. It was so sad.
After two nights on baby duty, David offered to take Saturday night. I accepted. I walked in early Sunday morning to find this:
Both passed out. And holding hands. I’m hoping he doesn’t kill me for posting this, but how could I not?! Melt. My. Heart.
But what was going on? Hailey has always been a good sleeper. Our 4 month sleep regression lasted a night. Maybe 2. And other than that? She’s a solid snoozer. I’ve heard that sleep can get messy when babies reach a new milestone and she did just learn to sit by herself (!)…
But her sleep never suffered with any other milestones, like rolling or reaching. Hm.
We tried our old swaddle and the sleepsuit and it doesn’t seem to matter what she’s wearing to sleep. Nothing changed in her environment or routine. This leaves me thinking it has to be one thing: Teething. Only, there are absolutely no visible signs of teeth.
So what are other signs of teething? I’ve done my research…
Drooling. She’s been drooling more, but not buckets.
Low grade fever. No fever.
Excessive chewing to apply counter pressure to the gums. Yes, she loves chewing on everything, but I thought it was just her age?
Bulging gums because the teeth are pushing through. No signs of bulging.
Fussiness. At night, yes, but during the day she’s still pretty happy.
Night waking. Oh yes. Definitely YES.
Diarrhea caused by swallowing extra saliva. Nope. No diaper issues.
Coughing, also caused by excess saliva. Yes, she coughs all the time. It sounds like a fake cough and I thought she just thought it was a fun sound, but maybe it’s more?
Lack of Appetite caused by pain on the gums while nursing. Nope; she seems to be eating normally.
Pulling at ears. Occasionally she’ll bat at an ear, but nothing too noticeable.
She certainly doesn’t fit all the criteria, but since I couldn’t fathom any other possibility, I bought some Hylands Teething Tablets.
These little dissolvable tablets are homeopathic (all natural). They use microdoses of natural medicines that help ease pain without benzocaine, parabens, artificial dyes or flavors. I had heard wonderful things abut them, but was also cautioned because there was a recall of the tablets in 2010 about worry of the amount of belladonna present in the tablets. I looked further into the recall (the company voluntarily recalled their product and there was a thorough investigation that found no conclusive link). I also read more into the concern of belladonna and found that a 10 pound child would have to consume 1000 tablets (6 full bottles) to even get close to the amount to exhibit the first possible side effect of belladonna. Source
I know there is stigma against products not regulated by the FDA and I think it’s important to do research and pick the option that YOU feel most comfortable with. Personally, something being FDA approved doesn’t calm all my fears. After all, there have been plenty of recalls of FDA-approved medicine and even medicines determined to be ‘safe’ have later been found to have adverse effects. Plus, all methods of easing pain seem to have some warning. For example, Orajel numbs the gums, which sounds great, PLUS it’s only topical, but some worry that it also numbs the infant’s tongue and can lessen their reflexes, which might lead them to choking on saliva. Also, there is concern about the benzocaine in Orajel.
At the end of the day, like all things with parenting, I encourage you to find what works best for you and your child and not simply listen to the good or the bad things that “they” tell you.
Personally, I was most comfortable with the tablets, so yesterday I dissolved 2 pills under Hailey’s tongue 3 times (morning, afternoon and right before bed). This is under the recommended dosage, but I started small.
And guess what.
She slept all night long.
It was a challenge to get her to sleep at first, but I could blame the time change, restless nights or teething for that. However, once she fell asleep at 8:15, she slept solidly until… well, now (7:30am) and she’s still snoozing.
I’m so grateful that my baby girl is able to sleep finally, but am still confused as to what was/is going on. I feel like it must be teething, but there are no signs of teeth. And if it isn’t teething, what the heck is going on? Hailey is almost 6 months old, so I know teething is possible… Hm.
Did your child exhibit obvious signs of teething?
What did you do to help them ease the pain?
If it’s not teething, what else could it be?