A New Parent’s Guide to Teething

It’s natural for babies to cry (it would be alarming if they didn’t!). But if your baby is suddenly getting more irritable than usual, and if your baby is between six and 12 months of age, then it’s likely due to teething. Note that some babies teeth earlier, and some teeth later. Talk to a dentist if you have any concerns about your baby’s progress.

Understanding Teething

Your baby’s teeth begin their development before birth. The eruption of teeth is the process of the teeth rising up through the gums into the mouth. The teeth may erupt a few at a time or one at a time. Most babies get their bottom middle teeth first, followed by the two middle teeth on the upper jaw. The other teeth erupt later. The second molars may not erupt until after age two, but all kids should have a full set no later than the third birthday. Your child is ready for his or her first dentist visit when the first tooth erupts or no later than the first birthday if your child is a late bloomer.

Identifying the Signs of Teething

Teething usually makes babies fussy and irritable. This is because the gum tissue can get tender or sore. Most babies start drooling excessively when they teeth. Sometimes, drooling can lead to irritated facial skin or a facial rash, which should be evaluated by a pediatrician. Teething might also cause:

  • Gnawing or chewing motions
  • Refusal to eat/loss of appetite
  • Problems getting to sleep or staying asleep

Soothing a Teething Baby

Never give a child under age two any medications unless directed to do so by a pediatrician. Avoid homeopathic teething gels, tablets, or other topical applications for teething—these can cause serious side effects like seizures and breathing problems. Instead, use a clean finger to gently rub your baby’s irritated gums. Provide a clean teething ring made of firm rubber . Your baby will enjoy chewing on it. Avoid homeopathic teething rings, such as those marketed as magnetic, as these have been known to contain lead.

We welcome young patients at Park 56 Dental, and we make every effort to ensure each child’s visit is a pleasant, stress-free experience. Our dentists and hygienists firmly believe in the importance of positivity in the dental office. Call (646) 783-3529 to schedule a visit with a friendly pediatric dentist in NYC.