Teething reffers to the process when babies start growing their teeth. It often happens when the child is around 6 to 12 months old. There are some babies who would start showing symptoms of teething as early as 3 to 4 months old, and there are some who doesn’t have even a single tooth during their first birthday.
First time parents usually becomes worrisome during their child’s teething because some babies experience sickness (but not severe though) along with it. In this article, let’s discuss everything about teething including symptoms, pain remedies and the sickness that comes along with it.
As the teeth is about to come out, expect that the baby would drool more than he usually does. His gums can no longer control the muscles in the mouth does making him drool even more.
Biting becomes the baby’s way of easing the pressure and the uncomfortable feeling he gets to have while teething. If your baby bites on you, do not get mad at him. For sure he didn’t mean to hurt you, he just wants a relieve from this new thing he is experiencing.
Baby’s suckling of fist and fingers is sometimes associates with his hunger. But if the baby is well-fed and yet he is still suckling more, that could be a sign that he is teething. Suckling can also relieve the pressure in baby’s gums when teething.
•Loss of Appetite
Now this is one of the downsides a baby could experience when teething. The pain and pressure they feel in their mouth makes them want to resist eating and someting even drinking milk too. Just make them take food little by little. Or you can as your pedia for recommendations as to what would be the best thing to do.
It pains the mother to watch their baby crying and being fussy when teething. The discomfort they feel at this time could make them cranky. Just be there for your baby and support him. Everyone goes through teething when they are young, so don’t worry that much and just think positive.
Your baby may find it difficut to sleep at night or during nap time as he is experiencing swelling and soreness in the gums because of the teeth that is about to come up from the gums.
The baby’s gums become sore and tender when teething. After a few days of swelling, the little teeth will then come through. This could mean that there will be so much discomfort your baby would feel at that moment but it will all be gone once the teeth finally and successfully comes out.
•Rashes Around the Mouth
Because of too much drooling, rashes might occur around the baby’s mouth area. Be sure to pay attention. Wipe and clean the area when the baby drools. Rashes could be stingy and painful too which adds salt to the wound when baby is already experiencing the discomfort of teething.
•Slightly Raised Temperature (less than 101 F)
Though some of researchers believe that true fever has nothing to do with teething, a baby’s temperature might slightly go over the normal, it is called teething fever.
•Wanting to Chew on Hard Things
This symptom is associated with biting and suckling. The baby tries to put something into his mouth so his gums would be pressed a little, rubbed a little, in hope that it could ease the discomfort that is there.
•Touching and Rubbing Cheeks and Ears (Sometimes Pulling Ears Too)
This usually happens when the baby is growing his molar teeth and doing an attempt to ease the pain and discomfort at the same time trying to send us a message that his molar is erupting.
What Can You Do to Help and Soothe a Teething Baby?
Teethers are objects designed for babies to bite and suck on, to help them ease discomfort or soothe them during their teeth’s eruption. Examples of teethers are teething rings, teething toys and pacifiers.
•Apply Teething Gel or Ointment to the Gums Affected
You can get teething gel or ointment over the counter. These are big help to lessen pain and inflamations in the baby’s gums. You can ask for recommendations from your doctor or pedia denstist if you are not sure which one is best to use for your teething little one.
•Comfort Your Baby
Hugs, cuddles, kisses and love are free, you can use these as a way to comfort your baby. Support them by being extra patient when they are fussy and cranky. Give them love when they are in pain and assure them that everything is gonna be alright soon. Make them feel secured and safe.
•Teething Medicines/Pain Relievers for Baby
Some doctors don’t advise using pain relievers for teething but if you think your baby really needs one, if he is in so much pain and your doctor already give you a go, then get some. Examples of infant pain relievers are acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin). You can use these medications to help ease your baby’s teething pain.
•Rub and Massage the Gums
Giving your baby some gum massage and rub could be a big help. You can use your clean finges, or use the back of a little spoon. Be careful not to put too much pressure though as it might hurt them even more.
•Cold Teething Ring
Cold and chilled objects seem to give comfort and soothe the inflamation in the baby’s gums. You can also try using chilled spoon, or even unused, clean, chilled rag cloth. Let your baby bite on those to give them comfort. Do not put frozen objects on the baby’s gums for too long though as it might damage the gums along the way. If your baby is old enough, you can make frozen treats for them to enjoy. Frozen treats melt inside the mouth so it will not damage the baby’s gums.
•Use Cup and Different Shaped Nipple for Feeding
One the baby experiences loss of appetite or withdrawal from eating or drinking milk, try to use cup or different shaped nipples. These might have less contact to the gums during feeding so the baby won’t be scared of pain when fed.
•Teething can cause fever. There might be an increase on the baby’s body temperature which is normal because his gums are swollen and he is experiencing inflamation, but that doesn’t mean that teething can really cause high fever. Not diarrhea, not even body rashes (except those near the mouth area because of excessive drooling).
•Your baby is too young to have teeth. Though teething usually happens when baby is around 6-12 months old, you can never tell if the baby might experience it earlier than the usual, which could really happen. There are even instances when babies already have teeth (Natal Teeth) during their birth.
•The baby is too old not to have teeth. Don’t let the society’s standards dictate what should happen. Teething happens when it is time. No one can say it’s too early, or too late.
•Teething Should be Treated. Teething is a natural thing. It shouldn’t be treated. You can help your baby find comfort, soothe them from discomfort and pain, but teething doesn’t really require treatments. It is not an illness or something to get rid of.
The discomfort in teething usually occurs during the days before the teeth erupts. This could last depending on how well your baby could handle it. Some babies seem to suffer more if they are growing molar teeth because molar teeth takes longer to fully come out of the gum’s surface and the affected area is much wider. But don’t let it stress you out. After all, once the baby’s little white pearl finally erupts, soon after, it will all be over, but only until another set of teeth comes along.
When should you call your pediatician for help? With all that’s happening during this whole teething phase, learn to look for cues to determine when will be the best time to ask for professional opinions. When your baby is being fussy for so much longer than you could hold it, when he is having colds and cough, body rashes, high fever, diarrhea, or may be experiencing vomiting at the same time, when everything is already too much for you to handle, when you are no longer sure of what’s going on or what to do from there, do not hesitate to ask for help from your trusted pediatrician. There is nothing wrong with consulting the professionals about teething. After all, that is the reason why they are there; to help the parents or guardiance in taking measures in ensuring that a baby is growing healthy and well. So again, if you must, consult a pediatician.
Teething is one of the most challenging journey you could encounter with your little one. As they get cranky and fussy, in pain and drooly, won’t eat and just gloomy, you are expected to stay calm and patient. This could be a very tiring part of your parent life, but this could be one big milestone to look forward to. So just keep your cool and go along with it. After this phase, you will surely be proud of how well you have put up with everything. Then one day, when it’s all over, all your sacrifices, all the pain and tears together with the hugs and kisses you have shared with your baby will soon be flashing at you as your baby smiles showing off those little white pearls you both worked so hard for.