When babies begin the teething process, the experience is often just as stressful and painful for parents. Listening to babies cry from discomfort can cause parents to lose sleep at night and become temperamental. Fortunately, there are tips to help soothe the teething process, which will benefit both babies and parents.
When babies are about six months old (maybe even as early as three months), their two front bottom and top teeth begin to appear. Parents will know their babies are teething if they see constant drooling and if their babies are putting random objects in their mouth to chew on. Other signs include crankiness and sore gums.
Parents can try some of the following tips to help ease their child’s discomfort. The first tip is to use a clean finger to rub the baby’s gums. The pressure from rubbing will help alleviate some of the irritation. Parents should also prepare a cold washcloth for their baby to suck on. A cold spoon or teething ring is also efficient for soothing because the numbing will help decrease inflammation and aches. Parents should refrain from giving their child a frozen teething ring as they are too hard for the child’s gums.
Parents can also give their child something hard to chew on, such as carrots or cold cucumbers. If parents choose this option, it’s important to keep an eye on the baby to ensure they don’t accidentally choke.
If children don’t like the taste of carrots and cucumbers, plastic and rubber toys are an excellent alternative option.
Because lots of saliva is produced during the teething process, parents will often find a lot of dried up drool. Too much could potentially irritate the skin, which is why it’s important for parents to keep a clean cloth or wipe to remove the dry saliva from the baby’s face.
Lastly, if none of these soothing options suffice, parents can try over-the-counter remedies, such as Tylenol or ibuprofen. However, some pain relievers are not helpful, especially the ones designed to be rubbed on the child’s gums. Due to the increase of saliva, the medication will quickly wash off and prove ineffective. Pediatricians also advise to stay away from medications that may numb the back of the throat and prevent babies from swallowing.
Parents are usually able to ease teething at home, but if babies are experiencing high fevers and diarrhea, it’s best to have them looked at by a doctor.
At McBride Dental, we offer general and family care services, along with preventative care services to keep our patients’ mouths healthy. We offer services for all age groups because we believe the earlier the teeth are taken care of, the longer they’ll remain healthy and strong. Some of our services include deep cleanings, X-rays, fillings, dental implants, gum disease treatment, and cosmetic services. If you are in the San Diego area and would like to schedule an appointment with us, contact our office today at (760) 471-1003.