How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

The Teething War Is Over

Posted by , under NOTEBOOK

Baby Teething

Yeah. So that just happened. For almost two years. Teething. The war is over now.

I finally realized it. It just suddenly hit me. And it took a flashback to get me there. My flashback didn’t consist of the sickly sweet smell of napalm or the sound of Jimi Hendrix sawing a guitar in half, but it was a flashback regardless. The teething war is over.

I was looking through our family photo library. Making a mental note that I need to take it easy on the trigger finger when I’m taking pictures, I ran across some photos of Lucas, year one. Can I still say “some” when we’re talking about several hundred? Anyways. In a lot of them the “thousands of words” the pictures told were something like “What is happening inside my mouth!?!” or “Please let the madness end!!!” or “Are you using that shoulder, ’cause if not… um, I could really use a good chew on it, m’kay.”

Two Hands TeethingMaybe it won’t hurt so bad if I jam two hamfs eh ma mouff.
Much Better Now TeethingOkay! I’m much better now! Yeah. Sorry about all that.

All those days and nights came flooding back. A time when it was hard to decide on how to ration my pity. Some for the little one, with really hard, sharp pieces of bone-like thingies plowing cruelly slow through his poor defenseless gums, or my wife bobbing him up and down in dismay and torment after only just having set him down to sleep five minutes earlier, and doing this 24-7-365. I always made sure to give myself the smallest slice of pity. I knew I had it easy. And I had access to something babies and a breastfeeding moms don’t: boat-loads of coffee.

The thing is, he hasn’t been teething for a long while now. So why am I just realizing it’s finally over? Remember, it’s not an over-night affair like some magic bean stalk. You don’t go to bed and wake up to the sound of a BLING! and see your baby-turned-toddler blinking in the morning sunlight with a toothy smile and look of relief and finality on his face. It tapers off, teething. It has aftershocks that remind you not to bother bringing out the party hats and champagne.

But then it’s over. At last. The teething is finally over. So now, like the older boys, Cody and Max, we move on to making sure his teeth aren’t knocked out or rotting out of his head. A new war. A toothpaste-minty cold war.

For those of you who are parent veterans, I sincerely apologize for opening the wound with a rusty butter knife, if I did. And for those of you who are still privates s##tting your pants in the teething trenches, hang in there! It does have an end! And trust me, afterwards, the bad memories will fade away (or be blocked out) and leave whatever you can remember of the good ones. Memories of baby lips wrapped around the arm of a couch in a cute little wriggling gnaw, or adorable smiles with spit-bubbles that turn into magical, glittering waterfalls of drool. (sigh) Good times.


Baby Dentures?
Why not? You’ve probably lost enough of your mind already for this to make sense.

Instructional Diagrams
If these don’t make you laugh, there may be something very wrong with you.


47 Responses to “The Teething War Is Over”

  1. I long for this day. I swear it is dragging on to an obscene degree with 1 or 2 teeth every few weeks. At this rate it feels like it will never end.

    • Andy says:

      Hang in there. Though it doesn’t seem like it, and it might even be hard to remember life before the “war,” it I does have an end.

  2. Mike says:

    We are at the very beginning of this process. She doesn’t have any teeth poking through yet but she chews on everything. Thanks for reminding me that she always has it worse.

    • Andy says:

      Ha ha! You’re welcome? Hang in there soldier. At least you don’t have to run through a mine field to get teething gel! Right? Okay. Not very encouraging. Sorry.

  3. Kristin says:

    So far my little guy has 6 teeth now, we have just started the battle. Just last week he discovered what he can do with his teeth and bit me nursing πŸ™

  4. Erich says:

    My daughter started at 4 months and finished around 1.5 years of age. Amazingly her teething was very easy on us. No fevers, only a few messy diapers, no rash… When she was in pain we’d give her these little homeopathic tablets we found at the grocery store (on a shelf, not in a trash bin) and they did the rest. Now our son is teething and so far it just seems to be pain for him.

    • Andy says:

      Ha ha! I love homeopathy too, but yeah, we always avoid the trash can items as well. Ha ha ha ha ha! Seriously though, that’s great you only saw minor action in the teething war and somehow avoided the horrors. πŸ˜‰

    • porche says:

      have you tried pieces of frozen fruit or veggies? Works a real treat I’m told. Plus it might make them less picky later because they are already used to the tastes

  5. Amy says:

    We are right in the middle of the teething war with our son. He has 8 teeth in and his gums are inflamed along his molars. The pain is bad – he keeps grinding the teeth he does have and I don’t know how to get him to stop!

    • Andy says:

      Don’t sweat it! All my boys ground their teeth at times. It doesn’t matter. They’re just baby teeth and they’re doing it because it must be doing something for them to relieve or distract them or get them used to the little chompers.

  6. zoe says:

    It’s all a matter of framing. πŸ˜€ I never thought of the sleepless/endless crying thing as teething. I thought of them as growth spurts. Sooooooooo….far as I know, he never teethed.

    • Andy says:

      So you’re basically saying you’ve blocked it out. Good choice. I did a bit of that too when… wait, what were we talking about? Something… babies… teeth? ARG!!! Happy place happy place happy place!!! πŸ˜‰

  7. Um… yeah. My kid had teething hell for 2 1/2 years… then we got a break. Now it’s teething hell again. Molars and front teeth, etc. I was surprised as hadn’t heard of teething hell with adult teeth coming in but have recently found out it’s not that uncommon. I don’t wish it on you. I’m not sleeping very well. Again. πŸ™

    • Andy says:

      Oh shhhhhhhhhhhhhit. Cody and Max didn’t experience that but it could still happen with Lucas when those little pearly whites start wriggling out and the big boys start coming in. πŸ™

  8. Stephanie K. says:

    Teething is a bitch. I hate her.

  9. we are almost a year into this teething war and I can’t tell you how much I am looking forward to the day it will be over. I feel terrible for my son, stupid teeth. I wish we didn’t need them.

    • Andy says:

      It’s such a cruel trick of the body. I was once watching a nature show with some beast being born. The thing was walking within minutes and was born with teeth. My thought: WTF!?! Humans got the shaft!

  10. Spookyn says:

    We are at the beginning of our war.Our little spud has cut his first two bottom incisors and I suspect the two top ones are growing. I can relate to the waterfall of drool though I don’t think I will ever have any clean clothes.

    Has anyone tried those “amber” necklaces for teething babies yet? And have they been helpful in dealing with teething pain? We have one however are concerned with a possible choking hazard.(^_^”)

  11. Vania says:

    My baby has been drooling and chewing everything for almost 4 months.. yet no sign of teeth at 8 months. Now that she can prop her self to stand up she is chewing on her crib rail. If she drools this much when she’s not teething… aaaargh don’t want to imagine…

    Wait.. that’s not the real problem is it? The horror of crying and no sleep… NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

    Well, congrats on wrapping up!

  12. Paul Iannacone says:

    Millions of years of evolution and we still have our new teeth come in by tearing through gums and tissue from the inside out.

    Maybe in a few million more years…………………

  13. Veronik says:

    I’m fighting this war on 2 fronts. Feeling a bit like Bonaparte…
    My youngest one is piercing is teeth by sets. Always 2 at the time. It doesn’t get them out faster, just more painfully.
    My oldest is starting to loose his baby teeth, and the “adults” teeth are hurting him like mad.
    So, my nights consist of bobbing up and down a crying 8 months old with a mouth full of Orajel and trying to comfort a 6 yrs old with a mouth full of Orajel (since on both counts, Tylenol doesn’t work, Advil either nor any kind of homeopathic stuff)

    I haven’t tried the amber necklace, but I tried the hazel wood one. It works for the rashes but not the pain.

  14. Emily says:

    Ahh no, the ghost if Christmas Future! I am just starting this particular War with my 9 month old twin boys. Christian has his first two incisors in, and Aiden has yet to cut one tooth. I am not looking forward to this protracted battle with nature. I hope that when they come in they come in easily, but I know that with two of them, the likelihood is little or none for getting that wish. Pray for me please!

    • Andy says:

      I am praying, meditating, hoping, opening fortune cookies and rubbing my screen with a large picture of a rabbit’s foot on display for you. Good luck!

  15. With one kid finished teething, and the other probably a couple months away, it feels like we are in the eye of the hurricane.

    How am I spending this moment of tranquility? Stocking up on teething rings, tylenol, updating the will… you know, preparing for the next battle with baby #2

  16. Elizabeth says:

    I don’t know what’s worse teething or trying to get him to brush his teeth…hmmm…definitely teething! And now if only we could get Cody and Max to brush their teeth at all that would be a feat and a half!!!!

  17. We are in the middle of teething. God help us!!

  18. Laurie says:

    Seriously is he a doll? He is just so cute! That picture of him in the clifford shirt is too much cute! All that does not sound like fun though…

    • Andy says:

      I sometimes shake my head in wonder and ask myself this very question. We haven’t found a seam or battery compartment yet, tough. πŸ˜‰

  19. Karen says:

    I hated teething (well now I am hating braces and sadly, kid needs them not for cosmetics but because his jaw is out of whack but STILL not covered by insurance – if he did not get them, he adult teeth would have been worn to the gun in a few years and he could not speak well).

    Anyhooo. I used to get odd looks because my oldest teethed on two things: rubber spatula and puppy gumma bones. All my son would gnaw on.

    My daughter chewed on gumma bones too. Then she found one of the dog’s cheesy stuffed bones…

    Not Mother of the Year – but crap when they are fussing a storm and orajel and baby tylenol fails… Sometimes whatever keeps them working on those toofers.

  20. Christina says:

    Anna was born teething. I don’t really recall her fist not being in her mouth or her face being drool free minus the immediate after bath.

    As the day progresses, she gets more and more slobbery as her dresses get damper and damper.

    She’s only 4 months old. Seriously, its going to be a long year.

    • Andy says:

      Ha ha! They’re the longest years when you’re in them and the shortest once you’re passed them. You’ll probably get through the teething war faster though. So that’s a positive to think about when you’re peeling off a saliva soaked bib. πŸ˜‰

  21. Kasey says:

    I can’t wait for that day. My son is now 16 months and still only has 2 teeth, but constantly drools and chews.

Leave a Reply