Teething is a notoriously tricky time for young children and can be of a nightmare for parents. It usually begins at around the age of 6 months when the front teeth start to erupt, but this can vary significantly. Some children do not develop any teeth until after their first birthday. This natural stage of development and it affects children in different ways; some have no problems, but others really struggle.
How do I know when my baby is teething?
You will usually notice signs of the condition before the teeth start to develop. Signs to look out for include:
- Rosy, flushed cheeks or a rash on the cheeks
- Your baby chewing and gumming on toys and objects
- Irritability and being more emotional or clingy than usual
- Dribbling and drooling
- Feeding less
Some babies will display none of these symptoms, while others may show all of them. For some babies, this is a horrible process that makes them feel poorly and sorry for themselves—while others hardly experience any difficulties. It is impossible to know how your baby will react to teething or how long the process will take.
The first teeth to appear are generally the lower incisors, followed by the upper incisors, the lateral incisors, the canines and then the molars and second molars. Most children will have all their baby teeth by the time they reach the age of 2-and-a-half years old.
What can I do to help my baby?
Parents often feel helpless during such times and it can be difficult to see your baby going through pain. Thankfully, there are things you can do to help your baby get through this necessary process, including:
- Applying teething gel to your baby’s gums to soothe soreness and pain
- Giving pain relief medication to ease discomfort and control temperature (Note: Always check with your doctor or pharmacist and follow dosage instructions, as some medications are not suitable for children under the age of 12 months old)
- Buying teething toys; you can buy cold rings for babies to chew on and toys which soothe their gums
- Giving cold foods for babies to chew on and suck and drinks to ease painful gums
- Giving plenty of cuddles; most babies are clingy during this time and cuddles will help to keep them calm and reassure them
Teething can be a nightmare for children and parents, but there are ways of getting through it. Try to prepare by reading up, asking your doctor for advice, and stocking up on pain relief medication and remedies.
Bio: Rich is a freelance writer for the dentalimplant.co.uk site where you can learn more about dental health problems and how these can be remedied through proper care. Rich can be found on twitter @thefreshhealth.