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Teething and how to treat it at home

There is no doubt that the pain of emerging teeth in infants is an ordeal for children and parents alike, which means that your child will keep you awake all night because of the pain he feels during the process of “teething”.

Teeth emerging in infants

Although the timing varies greatly, babies often start teething at around the age of 6 months.

The lower front teeth (lower central incisors) are usually the first to emerge, followed by the upper front teeth (upper central incisors).

Normal signs and symptoms of teething, according to the Mayo Clinic website include:

Excessive drooling.
Babies chewing things.
irritation.
Ulcer or sore gums.
A slight rise in temperature – but no fever.
While many parents believe that teething causes fever and diarrhea.

Treating toothache in infants

While the Australian website Stay at Home Mum suggests some home remedies that help to feel more comfortable during the emergence of teeth in infants, you can also rest assured that the pain of teething in children will not last for long.

chewing

Teething babies love to chew, as this movement provides pressure on the gums. This helps relieve the discomfort of new tiny teeth making their way through the delicate gums.

There are some drugstore items such as rubber teething rings and rattles to relieve this pressure.

It is also preferable that the body used for chewing be cool because it helps to numb the gums a little, so try placing a frozen wet towel in your child’s mouth, or giving him frozen fruits such as bananas and peaches after placing them in a “baby feeding net”, a net that places foods inside to reduce the risk of choking in children infants.

massage

The Healthy Children website says that rubbing fingers gently on a baby’s gums provides great relief during teething.

But do not forget to wash your hands well before massaging the areas where the teeth will begin to appear in children.

cold drinks

A bottle filled with cold water and ice can provide cold relief for the gums of babies over six months.

If the child refuses the bottle, try giving them (ice-free) water in a glass.

cold foods

Try feeding your child some soft, cold foods such as custard, yogurt or pureed fruit (if the child is old enough to eat them). This can help soothe gingivitis.

Prescriptions

If chewing, rubbing, and eating cold foods aren’t enough, you may have to turn to some paracetamol, ibuprofen, or infant toothache relief gel.

But it is best to speak to a pediatrician or pharmacist to determine what is best to use for your child’s age group.

Alternative natural recipes

There are many alternative and natural recipes available on the market for teething babies, which are often safe and effective.

It’s also a great alternative if you don’t want to give your child over-the-counter medicines, and these remedies are available at most pharmacies.

But it is best to discuss the most appropriate types with your pharmacist as well.

Treatments to relieve tooth pain in infants should be avoided
For your child’s safety, avoid using the following:

Over-the-counter treatments, including teething gels, as the benefits of topical gels have not been proven and may cause your child to have seizures and difficulty breathing.

Teething medications containing benzocaine or lidocaine: These pain relievers can be harmful — even fatal — to your baby.

When do we need to contact the doctor?

Teething pain in children can usually be managed at home, but we advise you to contact your pediatrician if your child seems particularly uncomfortable or if teething appears to be interfering with his eating or drinking.

Caring for a new baby’s teeth

Run a clean, soft cloth over your baby’s gums twice a day – after feeding in the morning and before bed. Cleaning prevents food particles and bacteria from accumulating in your baby’s mouth.

When your child’s first teeth appear, use a small, soft-bristled toothbrush to brush his teeth twice a day.

Until your child learns to spit – around the age of three – use a swab of fluoride toothpaste no larger than the size of a grain of rice.

The American Dental Association and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry recommend scheduling a child’s first dental visit on or near their first birthday.

Remember that regular dental care in childhood helps pave the way for healthy teeth and gums.

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