Is your baby extremely cranky lately? Chances are that they will soon begin teething and these are teething symptoms.
The medical term for this is odontiasis.
It usually begins at the age of four months and lasts up to 36 months.
This is when the primary teeth start erupting from the gumline.
However, this timeline can be different for every child and there’s no need to worry if their baby teeth erupt later.
This article discusses the symptoms of odontiasis and how you can ease it to provide some relief to your child.
Teething Symptoms and Signs
These signs and symptoms will appear around 4 to 7 months of age.
Baby teeth are the primary teeth of your child.
Teething occurs before the baby teeth start erupting from the gums.
Their first tooth can come around 6 months while babies start teething about 2 months before that.
Irritability and Discomfort
Mainly there is huge discomfort in the baby’s gums and jaw.
The tooth begins to erupt from the surface of the gum.
The most uncomfortable are molars and the first teeth which are usually the lower incisors.
The molars have a large surface area hence they don’t slice through the gum as conveniently as the incisors.
Therefore, your child will get cranky, they will cry and get irritable due to the discomfort.
Excess Saliva and Drooling
It causes your child to drool a lot.
It produces excess saliva.
This is also why the teething medicines dissolve easily in a child’s mouth.
Though, this excessive drooling causes skin rashes around their cheeks, neck, mouth and chin area.
This is due to the bacteria in the saliva from the mouth reaching the skin.
Moreover, extra saliva can also cause the baby to gag or cough sometimes.
In fact, it is sometimes confused with having a minor cold.
The reason behind that is the diminishing of immunities.
Around 6 months of age, the immunity that the baby gets from the mother through the placenta starts reducing.
Hence, the baby starts to develop their own immunity and their weak immune system is at risk of developing infections.
Therefore, parents may confuse teething with cold as some of its symptoms resemble that of a minor cold.
However, teething will only cause an occasional cough and if your child has a proper cold, then you should consult a pediatrician soon.
A sign of teething can be a slight fever that does not exceed 101 degrees and remains between 98 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
This sign is rare and a low-grade fever is not necessarily due to teething but by an infection.
You should consult your doctor if it exceeds above 101 degrees.
Diarrhea isn’t exactly a sign.
People believe that as tooth eruption increases drooling and saliva, that causes diarrhea.
However, it can be foreshadowing a more serious infection.
Constant diarrhea can cause dehydration and ignoring it, considering it is just due to teeth eruption can prove to be very dangerous for your child.
Gnawing and Biting
The gums feel itchy and there is some pressure under them.
Hence, your child tries to relive the pain and discomfort by biting and gnawing on things.
They may gnaw on your finger or bite objects, but make sure they are sterilized and safe to put in their mouth. More on this later!
Rubbing Cheeks and Pulling Ears
When molars start erupting, the pain from the gums goes to the cheek and ears.
As a result, your child rubs their cheek and pulls their ear in response to that pain.
It is inevitable but pulling the ears can also be indicating an ear infection.
Hence, check with your doctor if this symptom persists.
Other symptoms include:
- Constantly bringing their hands to their mouth. Your baby will want to gnaw and bite on anything hence, they will keep bringing their hand to their mouth.
- Disturbed sleep because of pain in the gums. This pain will keep them awake and as a result, they will become restless.
- Refusing to eat because of swollen and painful gums. This pain and soreness will prevent them from eating, changing eating patterns.
Remember that your child falling sick because of fever, diarrhea, vomiting and cough isn’t due to their teeth erupting.
Teething signs are mild and even if your child may cry a lot and get fussy, they will not fall extremely sick.
Now that you know about these signs, let’s discuss how you can deal with them.
Baby Teething Remedies
Every child responds to remedies differently.
What soothes your child, may not soothe your niece.
Hence, try a variety of options to help relieve your child’s pain.
- Gently Putting Pressure on Gums by Rubbing
Let your child gnaw on your finger to relieve some pressure on the gums.
You can also rub the gums with a clean finger.
Dip them in cold water and gently rub them on their gums.
This is especially useful before breastfeeding as it will prevent them from biting while feeding.
- Using Cold Items
Giving them something cold works too.
Dampen a washcloth in cold water and let them bite that.
Other options can be a cold pacifier, a cold spoon or a teething ring.
They can keep gnawing on that even when you are not around.
- Let them use a Sippy Cup
You can change their feeding patterns by using a different kind of nipple on the bottle feeder or using a sippy cup if they are older than 6 months.
You can give them cold water in it to directly soothe their gums.
- Cuddle them when they are fussy and irritable
You can comfort your baby when they are undergoing crying spells because of the pain.
Teething is a difficult time for children and they can only express it by crying and being fussy.
When permanent teeth erupt they do not hurt as much as baby teeth.
Keep cuddling and hugging your child to let them know that you are with them.
These feelings of comfort can make them reassured and even decrease their pain.
- Cream for rashes
Use simple barrier cream on skin rashes and dry skin. However, make sure that you keep the mouth area clean.
Keep wiping the mouth constantly with a clean cloth so that the bacteria does not reach the skin on the face.
- Treating teething symptoms diarrhea, fever and cough
Teething symptoms fever, vomiting, diarrhea and cough are meant to be mild.
However, if they persist, call a pediatrician soon.
It may be an infection or disease.
Consult your doctor before giving any medication to your child.
Ibuprofen is not fit for infants. Moreover, do not give them aspirin.
Though, acetaminophen can act as a pain reliever.
However, use only them when the remedies fail to soothe a teething baby.
Also, be wary of overmedicating your child.
Only a small dose of acetaminophen prescribed by your doctor can work fine.
Treatments to Avoid for Teething Symptoms
Did your aunt recommend you a herbal medicine that will instantly cure your child’s pain?
Are you tempted to buy teething necklaces that your friend says works wonders for her child?
Since this pain will inevitably happen to your child, you will hear many opinions of parents on how to deal with it.
However, not every remedy is good for your child and in fact, can be very dangerous.
Some parents use teething gels and sprays that contain the anesthetic benzocaine.
According to the FDA, this ingredient can lead to methemoglobinemia.
It is a serious complication that can limit the oxygen supply in the blood causing high heart rate, shortness of breath and pale skin.
Anyone showing these symptoms should be immediately treated.
The FDA recommends not give it to children under 2.
Moreover, anything not approved by the FDA is not suitable for your child.
Do not give them teethers with liquids inside as they can break and spill into your child’s mouth.
Moreover, do not use any frozen solids as they can hurt your child’s mouth and cause more pain.
Also, be wary of using breakable solids that can lead to choking.
Speaking of choking, teething necklaces can also break in your child’s mouth and cause them to choke.
However, if you do want to use it then make sure it is on their wrist and not on their neck.
Plus, supervise them when they are gnawing at them. Never leave them with the necklace unsupervised.
Hence, all these treatments have risks so it is better to only resort to remedies to relieve pain.
How Will Teeth Erupt?
In order to prepare for teething, you need to know the tooth eruption pattern.
The central incisors are the first to erupt by 6 months of age.
Usually, it’s the lower ones that come before the first ones.
Then the ones with it follow, these are known as lateral incisors.
You can see them erupting anywhere between 9 to 16 months of your child’s age.
Next are the first molars that will come when your child is between 13 to 19 months old.
Then there are canines that erupt in 16 to 23 months and finally, second molars erupting around 22 to 24 months.
Your child will have all 20 primary teeth by they are three years old.
The roots of these teeth die between 6 to 12 years of age and in return, 32 permanent teeth grow.
The wisdom teeth do not have a baby counterpart and only grow once in between 17 to 21 years of age.
Once, your baby’s teeth start coming in, clean them with a piece of cloth twice a day.
By the time they are 12 months old, you can also start brushing teeth.
Remember to not use fluoride yet as it can cause fluorosis.
Also, start flossing when two teeth start to touch.
Starting early hygiene habits will make them more regular at keeping their oral health in check.
Teething symptoms are hard for kids, however, they are also inevitable.
This is a tough time for children and their mothers.
However, you should try your best to soothe your child so that they are comforted.