The other day my 18 month old was being the biggest crank.
I could not for the life of me find out why. And then it hit me.
She has already gotten her 1 year molars and her 4 canines, so I guess her 2 year molars are trying to make an early appearance.
But after getting some ibuprofen in her, she was good as new!
Here is the typical schedule for when to expect teeth. It can vary with every child though.
So how do you know if your baby is teething or if there is something else going on?
Well with my kids, there are some surefire signs. But be aware! Unless most of the signs are present, it could be something else like an ear infection or cold.
This one is the major sign. Their mouths turn into little faucets that can’t be shut off. Unfortunately, I have yet to find anything that helps with this other than the darn tooth just breaking through.
Chewing on EVERYTHING
Toys, fingers, cups, power cords (I’ve never seen that though….😳), ANYTHING that they can get into their little mouths.
This is because they love the feel of the counter pressure that these objects provide. Think of it like a massage. When someone rubs your shoulders, the pressure sometimes hurts a little, but feels oh so good at the same time.
It is the same way for your baby. So make sure to stock up on some awesome teethers, like these.
I also like the teething necklaces that you can wear around your neck, while your baby chews on them! (Since when was the last time you could wear a “necklace” that your baby DIDN’T chew on it.)
You can also get something like this, where you can put frozen fruit inside. Your baby gets the cold, the pressure, and a yummy flavor, and you don’t have to worry about them choking on raspberries. (Only use this though if your baby is over 6 months old and has already been introduced to these foods.)
This one should be a given. A little bone is trying to force its way through tissue. That has got to hurt! So with pain comes crabbiness.
This is related to drooling. I think because something is always in your baby’s mouth, that they become mouth breathers and stop breathing through their noses as much. This leads to the nose running a lot more.
Don’t worry though. If the mucous is clear, more than likely your baby isn’t sick. If its green though, it could be some kind of respiratory bug and not teething, so keep an eye on that.
Excess messy diapers
I’ll admit, this one makes no sense to me. But for some reason, when either of my kids were teething (and all 6 of my siblings according to my mother) we had more messy diapers!
I guess maybe the whole body goes out of whack, but it is very possible your baby could experience the same thing.
Be prepared to keep their bum nice and dry, and if you get a diaper rash, check out my post The Only Hack You’ll Ever Need for Curing a Diaper Rash, and check out this diaper ointment! My daughter (18 months) even asks for her “bum cream” because it really helps her!
When I say low fever, I mean low fever. 100°F or below. Anything above that (or if you are having other troubling symptoms) make sure to check in with your doctor.
This can be due to pain again. It is hard to sleep when your mouth hurts!
When your baby is teething, the act of sucking is actually very painful. Because of this, your baby will probably eat a lot less. It’s relatively normal, but again, if you’re concerned, call your doctor.
If you are breastfeeding, often nursing takes more sucking power than bottle feeding. So if your baby refuses to nurse, try pumping and giving a bottle and see if he/she will eat then.
This is typically due to poor sleep because of pain. Be patient with your little one! Teething is hard work. I think there is reason why adults can’t usually remember before the age of 3…
Pulling on ears
The ears, nose, and mouth are all connected, so sometimes babies will pull on their ears when experiencing teething pain. But if you have a high fever (but sometimes even no fever), and your baby is screaming when lying down, your child could have an ear infection. In that case, call your pediatrician to make sure.
So what to do?
There has been evidence found that teething gels and homeopathics are not safe for babies due to some ingredients. Check with your doctor before trying any of those.
I also don’t believe in amber teething necklaces. There is little scientific evidence that they work, and they can be a huge choking hazard for your child.
I have found that the best remedies are Tylenol/Ibuprofen, teethers, and patience.
Maybe purchase a baby carrier to help your baby be held, but allow you to have your arms free to accomplish things.
And keep in mind, teething is a process. Your baby could be “teething” for months before you even see the first tooth! Teeth go up and down before finally erupting, so your baby will experience symptoms when they come up, and then the symptoms may fade when they go back down.
Even though it may get rough, there will be end. So hang on!
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