The process of the sequential appearance of teeth in an infant is known as teething. According to Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) an infant can begin teething anytime between 4 to 12 months. The infants develop 20 deciduous or milk teeth in the first 3 years of their lives.
Tooth eruption in your baby.
Tooth eruption is the process in which teeth of your baby become visible know as “cutting the teeth”,
Your baby’s first tooth!.
On an average basis, teething starts at around six months to adapt to the changing diet and introduction of solid foods. The process of teething continues till the age of 3 years when the baby develops 20 milk teeth. The canine teeth, which usually come through at about 15-18 months of age, are the most painful.
Teething can differ from one baby to another.
There are 20 milk teeth, ten at the top and ten at the bottom. The baby’s teeth tend to emerge in pairs from front to back. Teeth in the lower jaw mostly appear a couple of months before the corresponding teeth in the upper jaw. The order in which a baby is going to teeth is not pre-decided and generalized. The teething of no two children is same. Though, the general pattern of emergence is:
1. Lower central incisors (2)
2. Upper central incisors (2)
3. Upper lateral incisors (2)
4. Lower lateral incisors (2)
5. First molars (4)
6. Canines (4)
7. Second molars (4)
Although, the age at which babies begin to start teething and the rate at which it proceeds, differ greatly. The chart below indicates the order in which teeth usually appear.
(note for creative: Adapt the chart with the help of creative guys)
Teething can make your baby restless.
Teething is a very painful process. Sharp tooth suddenly starts developing through the soft gums of your baby. This swells her gum and creates itchiness, making your baby restless. Generally, it is the first tooth that causes the maximum discomfort.
Your baby may be quite restless and keep biting on everything that she can lay her hands on. She may also put her fingers in her mouth more often. Her appetite may also reduce. Try to soothe your baby by giving her cold foods or teethers. You can also massage her gums by applying very light pressure with your clean fingers. You must contact your doctor to get advices to calm your baby like a soothing gel.
Signs of your baby teething.
Teething process is varied for different babies. When your baby is cutting a tooth, she may be irritable, may fret, bite, chew on things and drool. The cheeks of some babies turn red during teething and she may also dribble. Her gums become red and swollen and in few babies you can feel the tooth through the gum. But the signs of teething are different in different babies. Some babies may not show any of these signs during her teething.
Use teethers to prevent infection during teething.
Although teething causes a lot of discomfort in your baby, it cannot be associated with any sort of fever, vomiting or diarrhea. All of these may be signs of infections and not teething. During teething, your baby gets infection in her effort to chew on everything she gets hold of. The only way you can prevent this is by using sterilized teethers.
Restrict sugar in your baby’s diet.
It is also important to keep a check on the sugar intake of your baby. Sugar tends to enhance tooth decay. Avoid using sugar in your baby’s diet like giving sweets, chocolates or candies. Give unsweetened fruit or vegetable juices to your baby.
Start introducing brushing to your baby. Teach her to brush at least twice a day. It is also important to schedule a dental check up for your baby around her first birthday. Ensuring good dental hygiene practices from early age helps your baby enjoy a good dental health lifelong.
Teething is associated with pain, swollen and itchy gums that make your baby restless. Use teethers to give your baby some relief. Also, restrict sugar in her diet to avoid any tooth decay.