Teething is a physiological process of eruption of primary teeth (milk teeth) through the gums. You may notice that your baby is fussier, drooling more, biting, or chewing on things, and trying to put their hands in their mouth. All of this is normal and a sign that the baby’s teeth are starting to come in. Teething can affect your baby’s sleep, cause them to have a slight fever, and even have a rash. Sometimes, it may be an overwhelming experience for both you and your baby.
When do babies start teething?
The average age for a baby’s first tooth is 6-7 months. In rare cases, some babies are born with teeth, while others won’t have any teeth until after their first birthday. Most children will have all their baby teeth by age 3. That’s about 2.5 years of on-and-off teething. Teething symptoms can be similar to the symptoms of more serious illnesses.
Symptoms of teething
Let’s have a look at a few symptoms that might indicate that your baby is teething:
- Swollen gums
- Red cheeks
- Excess drooling
- Mouthing everything and anything
- Pulling on ears
- Painful cries
- Fussy day and night
- Seems uncomfortable eating
- Low-grade fever (under 100 degrees F)
- Whitening or blanching of gums
Teething relief for your baby
- Gently rub the gums with a cool, wet washcloth or a clean finger.
- Wipe your baby’s face with a cloth to remove the drool and prevent a rash.
- Use breast milk or formula to make a popsicle. Cold milk will help inflammation of the gums. Just make sure to never leave the baby alone with the popsicle.
- Give your baby something to chew on using a mesh feeder. Cold fruit helps a lot.
- Give extra cuddles to your baby, as it will create a calm environment for them to fall asleep.
- During the teething process, babies commonly experience a decrease in appetite. It is important to provide nutrient-rich foods to ensure each bite contributes to their nourishment.
Best foods to offer during teething
Babies often experience fussiness and reduced appetite while teething, which is understandable considering the discomfort in their gums. However, certain foods can relieve their sore gums while offering opportunities for skill development, taste exploration, and nourishment.
1. Cold pineapple core (coat in yogurt if too acidic)
2. Frozen mango
3. Cold banana
4. Cold-cooked bell pepper
5. Cold melon
6. Cold cucumber
8. Cold-cooked zucchini
An insight from mamahood
Teething is a challenging phase for both mothers and children. It is a natural process in which a baby’s teeth start to emerge through the gums. This can cause discomfort and pain for the baby, leading to fussiness, irritability, and difficulty sleeping. Patience and understanding are key during this phase. Mothers need to comfort their children, provide extra love and attention, and maintain a consistent soothing routine. It can also be helpful for you to seek support from other mothers who have gone through similar experiences. The Mamahood Forum offers a heartfelt opportunity for mothers to connect with one another, providing a space where they can share their experiences, seek guidance, and find comfort in support of fellow moms.