What is Teething
Although it may appear that children are born as little toothless bundles of joy, the reality is that primary teeth (AKA baby teeth) are nearly formed at birth and situated under the gum line. A kid's first chomper will appear prior to their first birthday, generally between four to seven months of life.
While the eruption of juniors first tooth is an important rite of passage, it can open the floodgate to plenty of tears and sleepless nights, courtesy of the teething process. As a kid grows, so will the primary teeth and typically, they will emerge in pairs growing from front to back and the back molars will complete the set (1-800-DENTIST). By the time children reach age three, all 20 teeth should have grown in.
As each one does, they will slowly break through gums making them sore and tender. As a result parents may notice a change in the toddlers normal disposition. According to 1-800-DENTIST some common behaviors and symptoms include:
- Low-grade fever
- Increased drooling
- Rejecting food
- Trouble sleeping
How to Help Teething Babies
Parents who remember the pain associated with their wisdom teeth growing will be sympathetic to the discomfort caused by baby teeth. Since local anesthetics are no longer considered safe option, caregivers will need to find other alternatives to minimizing their babies' tooth discomfort. Some other options include:
- Rubber teething ring
- Providing baby with a cool washcloth to suck
- Giving a baby a bottle filled with clean, fresh and cool water
- Feeding baby cool and nutritious foods such as low fat, sugar free yogurt, sugar free applesauce or frozen bananas
- Gentle massaging affected gums with clean fingers
Once that first tooth erupts, parents need to tend to their child's oral health needs in order to reduce the odds of a child developing cavities or tooth decay. After feeding, parents need to gently wiping down their child's gums with sanitary gauze or a soft cloth in order to reduce the levels of cavity causing sugar left behind.
Additionally, a professional dental visit is in order as tooth decay is a risk and if left unchecked, can inhibit the proper development of a child. Seeking professional dental care can also provide additional tips on how to sooth baby's toothaches and pains.
If you are looking for Juniorsâ€™ first dentist, 1-800-DENTIST is happy to help. Our database is filled with thousands of pediatric dentists, kid dentists and family dentists. All 1-800-DENTIST members have been screened to ensure you and your loved ones receive quality dental care they deserve.