Is your teething baby keeping you up at night? Learn how to calm your baby’s painful gums and care for their new teeth.

Tips for easing painful gums due to teething
 Remember that regular dental care from children lays the foundation for a lifetime of healthy teeth and gums.

Teething may be difficult for both infants and their parents due to drooling, irritability, and crying. Here is some information to help you both feel better.

Is teething pain normal?

Although timing varies greatly, most newborns begin teething about six months of age. Typically, the two lower front teeth (lower central incisors) erupt first, followed by the two upper front teeth (upper central incisors).

The classic symptoms and indicators of teething include:

  • Excessive salivation
  • Chewing on things
  • Irritability
  • Sore or painful gums
  • Slightly elevated temperature, but no fever

Good to know: Many parents believe that teething causes fever and diarrhoea, but according to studies, these are not indicators of teething. Consult a physician if your infant has a fever of over 80 degrees Celcius or diarrhoea.

What is the best remedy for painful gums?

If your infant appears uncomfortable when teething, consider the following simple tips:

  1. Massage your child’s gums: Rub your baby’s gums with a clean fingertip or damp gauze. The pressure can alleviate your infant’s distress.
  2. Keep your cool: A cool spoon or chilled — not frozen — teething ring can be comforting on a baby’s gums. To prevent tooth decay, avoid dipping these objects in sweet substances.
  3. Try an over-the-counter medication: Consider giving your infant age-appropriate over-the-counter pain drugs such as acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) or ibuprofen if they are very irritable.

Which should I avoid?

To protect your child’s safety, avoid using:

  1. Over-the-counter homoeopathic teething pills: There is no evidence that topical creams and teething pills are beneficial. In recent years, lab investigation of several homoeopathic treatments revealed higher than listed concentrations of the component belladonna, which can induce convulsions and respiratory difficulties.
  2. Benzocaine or lidocaine-containing teething remedies: These pain medications are potentially lethal for infants.
  3. Necklaces, bracelets, and anklets for teething: These objects provide a choking, strangling, oral damage, and infection hazard.

Should I call the doctor?

Typically, teething may be managed at home. If your baby seems particularly unhappy or teething is interfering with their feeding or drinking, consult a physician.

How do I take care of my baby’s new teeth?

  • Wipe a soft, clean cloth over your child’s gums twice daily, after the morning feeding and before bed. The washing will prevent food particles and germs from accumulating in your infant’s mouth.
  • When your baby’s first teeth arrive, use a tiny, soft-bristled toothbrush to clean them twice a day. Use a smear of fluoride toothpaste a little larger than the size of a grain of rice until your child is around three years old and can spit. As your child ages two to three years, transition to a pea-sized portion.
  • Take your child to the dentist. Experts advise scheduling a child’s first dental appointment on or around their first birthday.

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