Baby teething is an important occurrence that enables the baby to enjoy a larger variety of foods and get adequate nutrition for increased activities as s/he grows. Another important function that baby teething serves is that it maintains space for permanent teeth so that they emerge at the correct position at a later stage.
Here is a general guide on the timeline of baby teething:
|Kind of Tooth||Age|
|Central incisors||6 – 10 months|
|Lateral incisors||10 – 16 months|
|Canine||17 – 23 months|
|The first baby molar||14 – 18 months|
|The second baby molar||23 – 31 months|
As a thumb rule, there are 20 baby teeth, which should be in place by the time the baby is 30 months old.
It is quite normal for the baby to go through some level of discomfort as the teeth erupt. You may notice some of the following signs of teething in your baby:
- Swelling in the gums
- Redness in the gums
- Sleeping difficulty
- Putting hard objects in the mouth and trying to chew on everything
- Restlessness and irritability
- Mild fever in some babies
- Constant pulling or touching of the ear on the side where the tooth is emerging
- Sucking on the fingers
Teething issues with babies
Signs of teething are usually mild in babies; however, if your baby has fever or digestive issues, then you must consult a doctor.
Baby teething pain is quite common in all babies. However, it is not something you should worry about unless the pain is more than just mild and the baby is not at ease. Here are some ways in which you can help your child with baby teething pain:
- Give your baby a soft teething ring or some other cool object to chew on such as a cold piece of fruit. You can also give the baby a cold cucumber or carrot slice. This will prevent babies from putting random objects in their mouth, which could lead to a tummy infection. You should also keep a very close watch on the baby during this time as babies put everything in their mouth, and this could pose a choking hazard.
- Rub the gums of your baby very gently with a wet cloth dipped in cold water to ease the swelling and reduce baby teething pain.
- Give your baby lot of cool and soothing fluids to drink. Avoid drinks with very high sugar level.
- Wipe your baby’s mouth with a soft cloth every now and then to wipe away the drool. Baby teething is accompanied by excessive drooling as one of the common teething issues. Chewing on teething rings produces even more saliva. To prevent the skin from getting dry due to constant wiping, use a soft cloth and press it over and around the mouth to absorb the saliva. You can also use baby lotion to prevent dryness.
- As the teeth begin to grow, use a grain-sized amount of fluoride-free toothpaste to clean the gums and teeth of the baby gently. You can also use a toothbrush with very soft bristles or a finger brush for easy cleaning. Be very gentle with the toothpaste; otherwise, it could aggravate the baby teething pain.
Things to avoid:
- Do not place anything too cold or frozen against the baby’s gum as this could cause greater discomfort.
- Do not use teething powders.
- Do not rub aspirin or any other such medicine on the baby’s gums to ease the pain.
- Do not use herbal oils or homeopathic medicines to tackle the baby teething pain. These may not be safe.
Happy teething to your baby!
Also read: The Truth About Baby Teething
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