How Do You Know If Your Baby Is Teething?
When a baby is crying, what do you do? How do you understand the needs of your baby without their ability to speak?
Taking care of a baby especially for first-time mothers can be both exciting and scary.
There is no amount of happiness that can surpass that of being a mother. However, there are also inhibitions whether or not we are doing the right things.
It is important that we understand the stages of our child’s development and the corresponding adjustments we have to take.
A crucial stage of baby’s growth is teething. Each child has a different experience, though. First signs of teething usually occur around 4-7 months. But there are some cases when the first tooth appears as early as three months or as late as more than a year.
Some babies show multiple teething symptoms while others may have no signs at all.
The appearance of baby’s teeth usually comes in pairs. The first teeth are those in the bottom middle which is known as lower central incisors. After a month, the upper central incisors will show.
A general timeline for the appearance of teeth is as follows:
Lower and upper
Common Signs Of Teething
Following are some common signs of teething that you should take care of. Sometimes, it is difficult to realize these symptoms as many parents are confused whether their children are teething or have any other troubles. Now, let’s check it out!
Drool. It is common for babies to drool. But when you notice excessive drooling, it may be a sign of teething. Check the gums of your child to see if other signs or symptoms come up.
Irritability. Just the idea of a tooth slowly erupting from your gums can be disturbing. The process of teething is usually more active during the night making your babies uncomfortable and more irritable especially when sleeping.
Swelling gums. Before a tooth comes out, you may notice your baby have swollen, red, puffy gums. You do not have to panic since it is part of the whole process. Once the tooth comes out, the swelling will subside.
Change in eating habits. The swelling of the gums may be one of the reasons your baby prefers to drink from the bottle rather than use utensils. For others, the counter pressure caused by the spoon feels better than the pressure on the gums during bottle feeding.
Gnawing. Due to the pressure of a growing tooth, your baby may feel certain discomfort in their gums. To relieve the pain, your child would initiate counter pressure by gnawing or wanting to bite things.
Ear Pulling. Another possible sign is ear pulling caused by the pain getting transferred from the jaws to the ear canal. Aside from teething, ear pulling can also be a sign of ear infection. You can have your babies checked to be sure that it is not a sign of ear infection.
Flushed Cheeks. The irritability can affect the cheeks causing warm, rosy-red cheeks.
Chewing Fingers/Objects. The gums become irritable and can cause itchiness. Chewing helps to relieve the pressure and pain of teething. Make sure that you always keep your baby's hands and toys clean to prevent germs from being swallowed.
Tooth Buds. You can check your baby’s gum for tiny tooth buds as a sure sign of teething.
Remedies For Teething
There is no absolute cure for teething since it is part of the developmental stage. However, you can try different tricks and methods to alleviate the pain and irritability.
Ibuprofen And Acetaminophen. Pain relievers are excellent medicines for temporary relief. Unless your doctor advises you to use pain relief, it is best to stick to natural remedies
Distraction. The pain and discomfort can be temporarily forgotten if you give your child distractions such as a new toy. You should also give more tender loving care such as hugs and kisses to keep your babies happy.
Cold Washcloth. Cold temperature is ideal to alleviate and numb the swelling. The thick fabric can also relieve irritability without being too harsh.
Massage. Before the tooth comes out, the gums will be swelling and painful. Applying counter pressure through a massage can relieve the pain. You can use your bare hands or cover it with a washcloth while rubbing the swollen area.
Teething Toys. There are various toys offered to help relieve irritability. Before buying a teething product, it is important to consider various factors such as the material and safety of the product.
Extra Caution During This Stage
The symptoms and signs of teething among babies can be very similar to other illnesses. This why parents must take extra caution during this stage. We suggest the following:
1. Carefully observe the signs and notice how long it lasts. If it can be alarming such as a fever of more than 101 F, it is best to bring your baby to a doctor. When you notice that your child is more than a year already and still has no signs of teething, consult your pediatrician for an x-ray.
2. Taking care of your baby especially during their first teething is essential to ensure that your child will grow with healthy teeth. After the first tooth appears, start cleaning the gums at least two times a day. You can use a washcloth or soft training toothbrush to rub the gums gently with small tooth buds. Avoid giving your baby hard foods such as crackers, carrots or toasted bread that can cause wounds on the gums.
3. Reading and researching about preparation and care during teething is important. Knowing the possible symptoms will help you in dealing with the discomfort. There is no one remedy for teething since every child may prefer different methods to soothe the irritation and pain.
You can try different methods to see which one works best for your baby. If you have any questions, or any contribution and suggestion, feel free to comment below. Your experience will be the treasure for other parents. We would love to hear from you.