Teething in infants can cause quite a distress to both the infant and the parents. The process is normal and therefore there is no need to worry. Early signs will help you figure out what can be done to help soothe your infant while differentiating from other issues that your baby may be facing as it is common to confuse the symptoms.
When should you expect your infant to start teething?
It does depend on each baby and their growth although, ideally teething is expected to start at around 4-8 months. Starting with the lower front teeth, this will continue until the infant is about 3 years of age.
Common symptoms of teething
A majority of infants show symptoms while teething some of these include;
- Difficulty in sleeping
- Swelling or inflammation of the gums
- Diarrhea/ Rash around the mouth
- Loss of appetite
- Mild temperature of 38C
Diarrhea is caused due to the increase of saliva production when teething which makes the infant’s stool loose to some degree. Diarrhea could also be a sign of dehydration and therefore it is best to get in touch with a paediatrician if the symptoms appear to be severe along with vomiting and high fever.
2. Rash around mouth
The repeated drooling would tend to cause chapping, redness or rashes around the mouth. This would also be seen on the chin, neck and even the chest. Using a gentle moisturiser such as Vaseline would help in creating a barrier to prevent irritation.
Drooling caused due to teething can start between 10 weeks-4 months of age and will go on throughout the teething process. A bib would help make the baby more comfortable and cleaner.
4. Loss of appetite
Despite the tendency of babies to put something in their mouth, nursing would worsen the feeling of the infant’s sore gums. Making the baby fussy about feeding, even babies who would be eating solids would refuse to do so due to this reason.
5. Difficulty in sleeping
This is another common symptom where the baby would be up at night as a result of the discomfort they are having.
6. Swelling or inflammation of gums
A noticeable bruised lump under the baby’s gum that appears to be blue in common is called a gum hematoma and may cause swelling or inflammation which is completely normal. To relieve the pain a cold compress should be applied, if the lump is consistent or keeps growing a paediatrician should be contacted.
How to help alleviate your baby’s discomfort?
- Cold compresses can help with sore or inflamed gums. They need not be specific as this could range from cold drinks to refrigerated toys or other alternatives.
- Teething toys would also aid in providing relief as teeth are pushed up and teething babies do enjoy chewing.
- Pain relievers are another option that would be suggested by a paediatrician if the baby is often up at night due to the pain. This would usually be as a last resort due to providing ibuprofen or other pain relievers to a baby would need consideration and a prescription.
- Another healthier alternative would be Secrets of tea’s Baby Teething Relief Tea which is an all-natural blend of herbs specially incorporated to provide relief for teething symptoms such as pain, irritability, swollen gums or discomfort.
The tea has been formulated with Organic Rooibos CC, Organic Rose Hip CC, Organic Catnip, Organic Chamomile CC, Organic Lemon Balm CC, Organic Lavender and can be given to babies as young as 3 months old. It can be served cold which would yet again help with sore gums.
All in all, it can be quite a hassle for the infant but teething would also mean that your baby is likely to start eating solids soon enough. The process may not be the most comfortable for your baby or you therefore make sure to provide as much comfort as you can while embracing the experience.