Teething In Children and How To Make The Process Smooth For You and Your Child
Every child goes through the teething process, and your child’s teething should start around six months of age. It is essential to know that each child is unique, so their teething patterns differ.
Some children begin teething at three to four months after birth, while others might not start teething until around twelve months. Most times, the front teeth are the first to grow out then the lower teeth start popping up. Teething in children can be exhausting as your child may begin to get uncomfortable due to tooth eruption. When a tooth wants to grow, you will notice that your child may bite on fingers or scratch their gums with their hands three to five days before the eruption. Your child may also refuse to eat or drink due to mouth soreness at this time. You may also notice your child drooling due to teething. It is normal, and you do not need to panic, except the drool is causing rashes around the chin, chest, or face.
HOW CAN YOU CARE FOR YOUR CHILD’S TEETHING AT HOME
You can help your child have a smooth teething time if you do the following as instructed:
- You can help your child rub their gum gently where the tooth is erupting but before you do this, make sure you wash your hands properly or use a clean teething ring.
- You can give your child safe objects to chew on, such as teething rings, but avoid fluid-filled teethers.
- When your child is eating solid food, you should try offering cold foods and fluids as this will help in easing the pain around the gum.
- Do not use teething gels as some contain benzocaine which can be harmful to children. Instead, you can ask your doctor for teething medicines and avoid self-medication.
- You can also dip a clean cloth in water, freeze it and let your child chew on it.
WHEN TO SEEK MEDICAL ATTENTION.
Be sure to call your doctor or seek medical care if you notice that your child keeps dragging their ears when your child has rashes when you also see that your child is stooling.
It would be best if you watched out for changes in your child’s health. Changes like taking note of your child’s tooth if it is decaying or having not started teething at all after eighteen months of birth will be required in detail at the emergency room.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF TEETHING
You should expect different symptoms in different babies, but the most common sign that happens in children generally includes:
- Swollen red gums: you may notice that your child’s gum is red more than usual. Do not be scared as it is a sign of teething.
- Excessive drooling is a common sign or symptom of teething in a child. Try to wipe the drooling from time to time to avoid rashes on the face.
- Poor appetite: teething can cause your child to eat less as the gum makes it uncomfortable for them to eat.
- Biting, rubbing, or sucking the gums are also signs that your child is teething.
- Blistering on the gum can also signify that your child is teething and behavioral changes.
It is important to give your child a little more affection and attention while they are teething, as it can help them take their mind off the pain and discomfort they are having. You should also know that your child’s temperature might get high due to the teething they are experiencing.
Do not panic if your child grows teeth early or happens later than other children. There is no set time or duration as to how long your baby will be teething. Also, know that babies handle pain differently, but the pain will disappear once the tooth has emerged through the gums.
As a mother, you should start caring for your baby’s tooth as soon as it appears through the gum. You can either use a clean washcloth or a soft-bristled toothbrush for your child’s teeth. Do not use fluoride toothpaste on your child until they are about three years old and can spit out the toothpaste. Good hygiene starts early if you want your baby’s teeth to remain healthy.
STAGES OF TEETHING IN CHILDREN
Teething in children happens in five (5) stages but can last a long duration, and this may be difficult for the mother if she does not know what to expect during this time:
- Stage 1 (0-6 months): when babies grow teeth, they grow twenty primary teeth and these teeth are known as ‘milk teeth’ this is because, at this stage, the only food a baby ingests is milk.
- Stage 2 (6-8 months): at this stage, the first teeth erupt. The upper and lower front teeth start to erupt around 6 months. The pressure from the gum may cause your child to start chewing toys or fingers as it helps them with the uncomfortable feeling they are experiencing. In this stage, also expect drooling, so keeping a bib on will make it easier to keep the baby’s chin dry. It will also help avoid rashes that can form around the chin and mouth.
- Stage 3 (10-14 months): in this stage, your child starts growing the primary molars. These teeth come in the back of the mouth. At this stage, you will notice your child may become cranky and there might even be more drooling at this stage compared to stage 2. Loss of appetite, fever, and diarrhea is also common in the stage of teething.
- Stage 4 (16-22 months): Your child’s canine teeth will emerge in this stage. The incisors will also erupt in this stage. The same precaution in stages 2 and 3 can also be put to practice as this will keep the baby as comfortable as possible.
- Stage 5 (25-33 months): this stage happens to be the most painful stage for most children. In this stage, the large molars start to grow. Different parents usually try other soothing methods to find the proper soothing method for their children.
In all these stages, it is important to keep a close eye on your child at all times to ensure your child’s safety. Baby teething is no fun for the baby or the parent but now that you have a proper understanding of teething in children, you can now help your child experience a smooth teething process. Dental visitation is necessary as it will give you better knowledge in terms of care for the child’s gum.