When Do Babies Start Teething? Signs, Symptoms & Tips To Get Through It
No one wants to see their baby regularly uncomfortable, but teething is a significant and necessary milestone in a child's development. Understanding when this process starts and what signs to look for can help parents prepare for their child's needs and provide appropriate care.
Signs of Teething
Teething can be an uncomfortable process for babies, and it's not uncommon for them to exhibit several signs of teething. Some of the most common signs include:
A baby's behavior can change when they start teething. They may become fussier, clingier, or have trouble sleeping. They may also be more prone to drooling, which can cause skin irritation around the mouth.
You may notice that your baby's gums appear red and swollen, and they may even develop a small white spot on their gum where the tooth is about to erupt. Additionally, some babies may develop a low-grade fever or diarrhea.
Pain and discomfort
Teething can be a painful and uncomfortable experience for babies, and they may show signs of pain or discomfort. This can include crying or fussing more than usual, rubbing their face or ears, and refusing to eat or drink.
You might also notice runny nose so don't get it confused with a cold or sickness unless there's other symptoms.
When Does Teething Start?
Teething typically begins between 4 and 7 months of age, with the lower central incisors being the first to emerge. However, every baby is different, and some babies may start teething earlier or later than this range. It's also worth noting that some babies may be born with teeth already erupted, while others may not start teething until they are a year old.
- 6-10 months: Bottom front teeth (central incisors)
- 8-12 months: Top front teeth (central incisors)
- 9-13 months: Top lateral incisors (the teeth next to the central incisors)
- 10-16 months: Bottom lateral incisors
- 13-19 months: First molars
- 16-23 months: Canine teeth
- 23-33 months: Second molars (possibly the most painful stage)
Teething can last between 2 and 3 years but it wont be all at once. You'll get well-deserved breaks.
Teething Tips for Parents
As a parent, it's important to know how to provide your baby with comfort during the teething process. Here are some tips to help ease your baby's discomfort:
Teethers are always a worthwhile purchase. You'll probably want a variety of types in order to accommodate the various stages and levels of pain. For example, use a teether that's freezer safe for extra relief. Using a damp washcloth to massage their gums, or using a teething gel that contains a numbing agent to help ease the pain.
Coping with teething pain
If your baby is experiencing a lot of pain or discomfort, you may want to give them acetaminophen or ibuprofen, which can help reduce inflammation and relieve pain. However, you should always consult with your pediatrician before giving your baby any medication.
Safe teething toys
When choosing a teething toy for your baby, it's important to choose one that is safe and free of any small parts that could pose a choking hazard. Soft, rubbery toys that your baby can chew on are usually a safe bet.
Pro-Tip: purchase a clip on teething toy like Tasty Tie, to spare you and your baby the frustration if they lose their grip. Most other teethers will end up on the floor, which can be a nuisance for everyone.