All About Teething
Do you know what to expect when your baby starts teething? How soon should their teeth come in? Which teeth erupt first? How can I help relieve my child’s teething pain? If you are a new parent, you may have these questions. But don’t worry—our team at We Make Kids Smile is here to help you along the way.
1. When do my baby’s teeth begin to form?
Believe it or not, your child’s teeth begin to form in utero around 6 weeks. The basic formation of the tooth takes shape at this time, followed by the hard tissues between 3 and 4 months of gestation.
2. When can I expect my baby’s teeth to erupt?
You can expect your baby’s first tooth to erupt anytime between the ages of 4 and 12 months. Because each child is different, the time period might seem a little long, but if you ever have questions, you can always give us a call!
The first two teeth that usually come in for a baby are the lower central incisors, meaning the bottom two front teeth. A month or two after the bottom ones, your baby will get their upper two central incisors. And once your child’s teeth start coming in, you can expect about a tooth per month to erupt.
After your baby’s top and bottom central incisors come in, look for their lateral incisors, or teeth immediately on either side of the centrals, to appear. Then the first set of molars begin to erupt through the gums soon after, followed by the cuspids. Those are the pointed teeth also known as canines. Finally, your baby’s second set of molars appear around age 2. These are the last of the baby teeth.
When all is said and done, each child has 20 teeth in their baby (or primary) set. This chart shows approximately when a child’s teeth should erupt. Again, every child is different, so just use the chart as a guide.
3. What are symptoms of teething?
Once your baby hits teething age, what symptoms should you expect? Signs to look for include:
- Tenderness of the gums
- Irritability and fussiness
- Excessive drooling
- Trouble sleeping
Sometimes your baby may develop a rash on their face from the excessive drooling. If you are concerned, you can always contact your pediatrician for advice. Also, a baby should not have a fever while they are teething. If your baby is running a true fever, take them in to see their pediatrician for a checkup.
4. How can I help relieve my baby’s teething pain?
As a parent, it’s hard to see your baby uncomfortable and in pain. When your baby starts teething, you can help to soothe their gums by gently rubbing their gums with a clean finger or a moist gauze pad. You can also rub the back of a cool spoon against their gums to help with the pain. Another option for teething babies is a teething ring made of solid rubber. Make sure the teether is cool but not frozen before giving it to your baby.
If your baby is particularly fussy, you may be able to give them an over-the-counter pain medication made specifically for babies depending on their age and weight. Follow the instructions on the packaging or consult your pediatrician for appropriate dosage.
Doctors and dentists do not recommend using products that use numbing agents like lidocaine or benzocaine on children because of toxicity risks.
Visit the team at We Make Kids Smile!
Did you know your baby should see the dentist for the first time around their first birthday or once their first teeth erupt? If you have a teething baby, make sure you make an appointment to stop in and see our team of pediatric dental specialists. We love children and can’t wait to help them have a happy, healthy mouth! And if you are looking for more dental resources about teething babies, check out this blog post on how to clean your baby’s new teeth.