The Most Common Teething Symptoms
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The Most Common Teething Symptoms

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Your baby's first tooth will typically erupt some time around six months of age. While you may not be able to predict the exact moment of this first tooth's grand appearance, there are a few signs that a tooth is on its way.

Teething symptoms

Teething is different for each baby, but most will experience some, if not all, of the following teething symptoms:

Swollen gums: almost every baby will experience swollen gums to some degree. As a new tooth begins to erupt, the surrounding area will become swollen and may be tender.

Drooling: it's amazing how much drool can come out of such a tiny baby! According to BabyCenter, your baby will most likely produce copious amounts of saliva when he or she is teething.

Skin rash: a rash on your baby's face or chin is nothing to worry about; it's usually caused by excessive drooling, as mentioned above. Try to wipe off the drool as it occurs, but if your baby already has chapped skin, simply moisturise the area until it heals.

Discomfort: Most babies experience some degree of discomfort when they are teething, and they express that discomfort through crying and irritability.

Irritability: you guessed it — your baby's teething discomfort will probably make him or her feel irritable. For some babies, this passes quickly; for others, it can last up to weeks at a time.

Chewing/gnawing: babies learn pretty quickly that counter-pressure relieves the discomfort of teething. When they start teething, there's a good chance they'll grab whatever they can find — from teething rings to their own fingers — and start gnawing on it.

Low-grade fever: You may notice your child has a low-grade fever around the time they are teething, that is, one which is less than 38° C. Treat it as you would any other low-grade fever; the Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne recommends if your child is under three months and has a fever above 38° C take them to the doctor.

Loss of appetite: Teething babies may be reluctant to eat and drink. Babies who have graduated to solids may start refusing their meals. Call your paediatrician if your child misses more than a couple of meals.

Sleeping problems: If your little one is uncomfortable during the day, there's a good chance he or she will be during the night as well. Babies are known for waking up during the night when teething (even if they've been sleeping through the night for months).

Be there for your baby with tender love and care during this challenging time of tooth eruption.

This article is intended to promote understanding of and knowledge about general oral health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment.