As a parent, teething is among the first important processes in babies growth. That you need to remain prepared for. It’s a process that you need to be prepared for. The phase is always frustrating to both the baby, parents, and caregivers. You can make your parenting life a little bit easier during this time by knowing everything about teething in babies.
So, what’s teething? Teething is a phase in child development where the first teeth break through the gums. These teeth are known as deciduous teeth, but sometimes they are referred to as “milk teeth” or “baby teeth.” They always appear in a particular order, usually in a pair.
The Sequence Of Teething
When teeth emerge in an infant, they usually follow a particular order. Your baby will develop a total of twenty teeth that are divided into five different types of teeth. The order of teeth eruption is as follows:
- Central incisors (front teeth)
- Lateral incisors (sides of the incisors)
- First molars (back teeth after canines)
- Canines (sides of the lateral incisors towards the back)
- Second molars (the back teeth after first molars)
Even though there is a particular order in which teething occurs in some babies, it may be out of order. This is nothing to worry about as it’s completely normal.
Timing Of Teething
When it comes to teething in babies, the process is not the same in every infant. Some are early bloomers and can get their first tooth as early as 4 to 7 months old. In comparison, others can get their first tooth when they are nine months or even one year old. In most cases, it can take several years for all the teeth to emerge from the gums. Don’t be worried if your infant’s teeth haven’t come in yet; just trust in the process.
Always keep track of your baby’s teeth eruption. Occasionally there are those children who are born with one or more teeth. In this case, there is no need to worry. If any of the parents had their tooth eruption early, genetics might have played a role in the early teething.
Signs And Symptoms Of A Teething Baby
During teething in babies, the erupting tooth can press on the gums causing discomfort to the child. This is common in babies whose incisors or molars are coming in. The pain can last for a few hours, but the discomfort can continue for days in some infants. Spending time with your baby can significantly help with irritability. Giving your warm hugs can do the trick.
Teething is associated with the discomfort of the infant’s jaw. During teething, the pain of the erupting tooth will make the baby leave their jaws open. It usually stimulates drooling, and it’s common in babies who are about 2 to 4 months of age. Sometimes they can be even older.
The fluid from the baby’s mouth is usually a lot, and it can make them uncomfortable. Keeping your infant’s chin and neck as clean and dry as possible by wiping reduces chances of rashes.
3. Skin Rashes
Since teething stimulates drooling, areas around the mouth, chin, and neck of the baby tend to become wet. The constant drip of saliva in these areas can cause bacteria build up, and this can cause rashes. Periodic wipes around these areas will prevent any bacteria build up on the skin. You can also apply Vaseline to create a moisture barrier.
It will also help if you moisturise the area with unscented skin creams that are gentle on your baby’s skin.
4. Rubbing Of Cheeks Or Ear
The gums’ pain can shift to the cheeks or ears since they all share the same nerve pathway. You are likely to see this behaviour when the molars are erupting. You can reduce the cheek rubbing and ear pulling by gentle massaging of the gums. Doing this for one to two minutes can significantly help with the discomfort.
It’s important to note that ear infections can also make your baby rub their ears. If the rubbing is excessive or accompanied by symptoms such as fever it would be advisable to schedule an appointment with your doctor.
5. Refusing Food
Gum tissue may swell during teething, and this can interfere with the eating pattern of your baby. The eruption of teeth with a large surface like (molars) causes even more discomfort. When the infant is feeding, the swollen gums tend to become even worse.
As a result, it makes them shy away from feeding. When this occurs, it’s always a nightmare for the baby; they feel hunger and unease at the same time. Homemade frozen fruit lollies and cold yoghurts can help soothe the gums and offer a source of food at the same time.
6. Restless Sleeping
Well, if you thought that teething problems only occur during the day, then I hate to be the bearer of bad news. Not only does teething in babies affect their daily activities, but it also disrupts their nighttime sleep. When this happens, you should wait and see if the baby will go back to sleep without comforting them. If they are still restless comfort them with cuddles and be prepared to offer additional feeds to help settle them.
Many people associate teething with fever, diarrhoea, runny nose, cough, and rashes all over the body. However, research has shown that the process of teething doesn’t have a direct link to these symptoms. Several paediatric dentists also agree that there is no causal relationship between the two.
Remedies for A Teething Baby
1. Apply Pressure
One of the best remedies for teeth eruption is applying pressure on the gums. This ancient method is a natural and perfect remedy for relieving gum inflammation caused by teething in babies. You can apply pressure on your baby’s gums using a clean finger, teething toy or soft cloth. Gentle rubs and massages on the inflamed gums will soothe the area. It may hurt the baby at first, but in the end, it will ease the pain.
2. Apply Cold
Cold objects can significantly help to soothe inflamed gums. Using materials such as frozen cloths and ice cubes is greatly advised. You can also use frozen fruit or veggies, a cold spoon, or natural teething biscuits. To apply cold in the area, freeze the object, then gently rub on the gum or give the baby to chew.
The material will numb the area by giving a chilly relief to the gums. Don’t place the object on the gums for too long. It’s also important that you use this method on babies who are over six months old.
3. Try Teething Granules And Gel
Symptoms such as sore and tender gums and flushed cheeks can be relieved using teething granules and gel. They usually contain natural pain relievers that are great in soothing inflamed gums. These products are best to use on babies who are more than three months old.
The granules dissolve quickly and are usually applied according to the age of the baby. Always choose sugar-free granules or gels, and never forget to check the labels. You can purchase teething granules and gel at affordable prices.
4. Use Teething Toys
One of the natural ways of relieving pain from a teething baby is by giving them something to chew on. Getting a non-toxic teething toy that is baby safe can be a great start. When they chew, they counter the pressure of the erupting tooth, thus relieving the pain.
Silicon teething rings, wooden teethers, and soft toys are examples of recommended toys. You should observe your baby in order to know the best toy for his erupting tooth since not all toys will work the same. Ensure that the object used is safe for the baby, and always prep the toy before using it.
5. Include Herbal Remedies
For a long time, herbal remedies have proven to be useful in easing gum pain. These natural ingredients such as chamomile, clove, and rosehip are great for a teething baby. You can use the herbs to make an infused tea, cool it, and give your baby a few drinks on a spoon. You can also use the tea to dampen a cloth before freezing. The cold cloth can be useful in applying pressure on the gums.
6. Comfort Your Baby
Teething babies will always feel better when they receive comfort from their parents. All they need is lots of cuddles, kisses, and love from the parent. Some babies also feel better when you nurse them. When you comfort your baby, the process of teething in babies becomes even more exciting since you are soothing and bonding at the same time.
Taking Care of Your Baby’s New Teeth
Oral hygiene is vital whether your baby has teeth or not. Regular cleaning of your baby’s mouth is the foundation of your baby’s future oral health. You can use the following steps on your infant’s oral hygiene;
- Before teething, you can wipe your infant’s gums using a soft wet washcloth once a day. This can be done at any time throughout the day but try to do it around the same time each day so your baby recognises this activity as part of their routine.
- Once the teeth have started coming in, it’s time to buy a baby tooth brush . At this point you should be brushing baby’s teeth and gums twice a day in the morning and before bed. Brushing at this age will loosen bacteria that causes bad breath – yes even babies can get bad breath! Brushing is also important because it helps remove bacteria that causes tooth decay. Cavities can develop in baby teeth, not just permanent teeth, so it’s extremely important to brush well and often.
Final Word On Teething
The process of teething in babies can be an easy task if you are prepared for it. As a parent, you should know the type of teeth to expect and when they’ll come in. Understanding how to deal with the teeth eruption process will significantly help make parenting less stressful.
A simple toothache for an adult can cause so much pain so it’s worth acknowledging what your child will encounter when they have a whole new set of teeth coming through. The best thing you can do is to do what parents do best, be on hand to provide the extra cuddles and comfort. You may also like reading 19 Parenting Tips You Should Not Ignore