Every time I caught my baby chewing on crib rails, I would smile because it was such a sweet picture.
However, once I found out that it can be dangerous for my little angel, I stopped smiling and started the mission called “saving crib railings from little teeth”.
There are a few possible reasons for babies chewing on the crib rails.
In most cases, it’s absolutely normal because babies tend to chew on things to relieve the discomfort of teething.
When my tot started teething, I would catch her gnawing on her crib rails every time I entered the room.
It seemed to me like her crib became her favorite toy. Oh, you can’t even imagine that facial expression of relief.
In the beginning, I didn’t pay too much attention to it because, to be honest, it was so cute and I just thought she wanted to explore a little bit.
However, she started biting while breastfeeding and when she started to chew all our furniture and pretty much anything else she could reach, I realized that the problem was much bigger than I thought.
My four-month-old daughter had started teething!
Baby Chewing On Crib? 8 Effective Ways To Handle It
I fixed our little issue with a few very easy steps which I have compiled into this one list to help all parents who are struggling with a baby chewing on crib rails.
I sincerely hope these tips will be as helpful to you as they were to me.
1. Surround your baby with teething toys
If your baby is teething, then she probably sees her crib side rails as a great teething toy.
So, how to stop babies from chewing on cribs? Simply, surround them with different, colorful teething toys that will ease their symptoms.
You can get one of those chain or clip toys that you can put on the stroller or your baby’s crib.
You can also search on Amazon for some non-toxic teethers for your baby.
2. Introduce them to frozen treats
You should search for some recipes for frozen teething snacks to soothe your baby and ease their teething discomfort.
Your little angel will definitely love those – as long as she’s old enough to start solids!
Frozen treats can indeed do a world of good when your baby is struggling with teething.
They’re considered one of the best remedies for teething issues.
3. Soothe your baby by massaging their gums
If your baby is teething, she’ll probably have red and sore gums.
That’s uncomfortable for her and you can ease her discomfort and soothe her by simply massaging her gums.
4. You can make a no-sew crib skirt
For this DIY project, you’ll only need cotton fabric, hem tape, and a few sticky-back velcro squares or dots.
It would be a good idea to wash the fabric before you start making the crib skirt because you don’t want it to shrink if you wash it after you make it.
First, measure the crib and cut the fabrics by those dimensions.
Put the hem tape all around the edges of the fabric and iron it on.
Then you can take the paper off and iron the edges again.
Put some velcro dots along the crib sides.
Peel off the plastic backing of the velcro and stick it to the fabric.
Voila, there you have a removable crib skirt that can prevent your baby from chewing on the wood splinters and lead paint.
5. Get a silicon crib rail protector
Silicon crib rail covers aren’t dangerous at all for your little one.
If you put on a silicon crib rail cover, there are fewer chances that your baby will fall out of their crib and it will prevent her from chewing on the wood splinters and paint of the crib.
6. Or make a soft crib rail cover for your little one
You can get a little bit crafty and make a DIY gentle protective cover for your baby’s crib.
You can find tutorials for such DIY projects online.
The point is to cover and protect the wooden and painted railings.
Even if your baby starts gnawing on it again, it won’t be dangerous for her because now you’ve covered the railing with a more gentle and natural material.
7. Lower the cot base
If you’ve noticed that your baby has learned to climb and hold onto the crib side rails, then it’s time to lower the base of the crib.
It’ll be more difficult for your baby to pull herself up and chew the crib’s side rails.
Of course, you should also install a crib rail guard.
These are two of the most efficient ways to deal with a baby chewing on crib railings.
8. Buy a crib without lead paint
Many older cribs were painted with lead paint but now, lead paint is being strictly avoided especially when it comes to baby furniture.
The best way to avoid it is to purchase a brand new crib instead of using an old one.
If you plan on repainting the crib, make sure to use paint that’s safe for infants.
Why Are Babies Chewing On Cribs?
Although crib-chewing is just a phase that will pass soon enough, there’s always a reason behind this behavior.
So, here are a few possible causes of your baby chewing on crib rails.
1. Teething blues
Teething is one of the most common reasons why your baby is chewing on your furniture.
This is completely normal and all babies try to find different solutions for their teething problems.
You have to know that this is something new for your little one and it can be a little painful for her.
You can ease her discomfort by offering her different teethers.
If you think that this is causing your baby to chew on the crib, you should look for some more obvious signs that your baby is teething.
For example, does she drool more often or is her gum sore and red?
You have to know that infants mostly use their mouths to explore the world around them.
Their mouths are like their little windows into the world.
At about three months of age, my little girl started to put everything she could reach into her mouth.
She was so sweet, trying so hard to meet the world around her.
As famous New York dentist, Dr. Inna Chern, says: “Early on in a child’s life, it is very common and normal for them to explore their environments by placing things in their mouth.
They learn by tasting and feeling the texture of objects with their mouths.”
3. They sense your anxiety
If you’ve been feeling anxious lately about something then it’s no wonder your baby is chewing on the crib.
Your postnatal anxiety and all the negative feelings can very easily be passed on to your baby.
Trust me, infants are able to sense every time you’re feeling a little bit down and it affects them more than you can even imagine.
That’s why you need to manage your stress and anxiety and don’t let it affect your little ones.
4. Difficulties with sensory processing
Sensory processing disorder is a condition that manifests itself in the form of issues with responding to the input that a child receives via the senses.
Things that trigger their senses (light, sound, touch, taste) will attract undivided attention to babies who are struggling with this issue.
One of the most common signs of this disorder is exactly when your baby experiments too much with putting things into their mouth.
I know most parents want to know if it’s actually dangerous when a baby is chewing on their crib, however, it seems like pediatricians can’t quite agree on the answer to that question.
Some of them say that it’s safe and that you should let your baby do it because it’s how they’re exploring the world around them.
On the other hand, other pediatricians claim that it’s very dangerous and that you should find a solution as soon as possible to make your baby stop chewing on their crib.
They argue that a baby can swallow a wood splinter or even some paint chips from the crib railings.
I know that it’s so cute (and even possibly amusing) to see those little teeth marks on the crib railings or to catch your baby chewing on crib, but you should try to handle it and help your baby to stop chewing on things that present a potential danger to their health.
Better safe than sorry, right?
I wish you the best of luck with your little teething monster.
Be patient and remember, this is just a phase, it’s just temporary and it’ll pass sooner than you think.
• Melissa Willets. (2020, March 16.) Is Your Toddler Biting Their Crib? We Asked Doctors If You Should Be Concerned. Popsugar Website.
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