Let’s face it! We all love every time our babies hit a new milestone, right? From their first smile to every ooh’s and ahh’s, we wait anxiously for our babies’ one milestone after another. However, there is one milestone that gives nightmares to every parent and that is when your sweet little bub cut out their first tooth.
Teething is the only milestone that often brings sleepless nights, tears, and loads of discomfort for you and your child. So, if you want to find out more to prepare yourself well in advance then keep on scrolling because we have narrowed down some basics that you really need to know about teething.
When does teething start?
Your baby’s first teeth will usually make their grand, grumpy entrance at around 4-6 months old. However, the signs of teething can start as soon as 3 months old. In some very rare cases, newborns may be born with a tooth already erupted, or have a tooth come through in the first few weeks. What you need to do is look out for signs of teething, such as tender gums, drooling, or gnawing on a fist or finger, which may prepare your mind that you’ll soon be seeing a tooth emerge.
How Long Does Teething Last?
Teething is a long process that takes quite a while. Your child may complete this milestone between his second and third birthdays, which means the total teething period lasts about two years. However, remember! Your child may have teething discomfort that will probably come and go. Teething symptoms are typically experienced in the days before a tooth erupts; then the soreness subsides until a new tooth starts to come in. And if your baby was born prematurely or at low birth weight, that may also delay teething.
On average, babies have:
- 4 teeth by 11 months
- 8 teeth by 15 months
- 12 teeth by 19 months
- 16 teeth at 23 months
How Many Baby Teeth Will Appear in Total?
The first set of your baby’s teeth are known as primary or baby teeth. So, around 2 and a half to 3 years old, your little one will have a full set of 20 baby teeth. And when your child is around 6 or 7 years old, these primary teeth will start falling out to make way for the permanent teeth, which are called secondary teeth. Remember! It will take years for your child to have 32 secondary teeth. That’s why for a while, your child will have a mix of primary and secondary teeth.
Signs and symptoms of teething:
Most common signs and symptoms of teething include:
- Excessive drooling
- Chewing on objects
- Irritability or crankiness
- Sore or tender gums
- Slight increase in temperature — but no fever
However, some parents also experience teething fever and diarrhea. Remember! If your baby has a rectal temperature of 100.4 F (38 C) or diarrhea, talk to the doctor.
How to Soothe Your Teething Baby
Teething is quite uncomfortable for some babies. However, please know that there’s no magic technique that will speed up the process of teething. All you can do is experiment with known remedies to find something that will help your sweet angel feel a little better. Some of the simple tips are as follow:
- Give a teething ring: Teething ring helps your baby by easing the irritability of gums. You can also cool it in the fridge to give extra relief. Always remember! To keep your little one safe, you should never tie a teething ring to a string that’s looped around their neck or clipped to their top.
- Massage your baby’s gums: You can use a clean finger or wet gauze to rub your baby’s gums. It will ease your baby’s discomfort due to extra pressure on the gum.
Pain Medication: If your baby is extra cranky and has a low-grade fever due to teething then you can also consider your baby’s over-the-counter pain medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others).
What treatments to avoid:
- Topical gels and herbal teething tablets
- Teething medications containing benzocaine or lidocaine
- Teething necklaces, bracelets, or anklets pose a risk of choking, mouth injury, and infection.
Yes! Your baby’s first adorable toothy grins can be a milestone you’ll look for and treasure. However, remember! Teething is a slow process that requires loads of patience. So, don’t worry if your child is a bit late in hitting this not-so-sweet milestone because your bub will get there whenever she’s ready. Also, note that it’s important to establish good dental hygiene for your baby’s teeth (or tooth) as soon as the first one pokes through because it will help set your little one for healthy teeth and gums throughout her life.
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