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Teething 101

Teething typically begins when a baby is between six and eight months old, although some children don’t have their first tooth until 12 to 14 months. The two bottom front teeth (lower incisors) usually come in first and next to grow in are usually the two top front teeth (upper incisors). Then, the other incisors, lower and upper molars, canines, and finally the upper and lower second molars typically grow. All 20 baby teeth should be in place by the time a child is around two and a half years.

In preparation for teething, it’s best to educate yourself on what to expect and what you can safely do to help your child. Starting at the age of six months, signs to look for are irritability, accompanied by a lot of biting or chewing on hard objects and drooling. Other signs include gum swelling and tenderness; refusing food; and disrupted sleep.

Teething affects babies differently, but here are a few things Dr. Krieger recommend to parents to help their babies with the discomfort and potential pain of teething – and to help everyone at home get more sleep:

  • Give your baby a firm rubber teething ring to chew on. Avoid liquid-filled teething rings, or any plastic objects that might break.
  • Gently rub the gums with a cool, wet washcloth, or (until the teeth are right near the surface) a clean finger. You may place the wet washcloth in the freezer first, but wash it before using it again.
  • Feed your child cool, soft foods such as applesauce or yogurt (if your baby is eating solids).
  • Topical pain relievers and medications that are rubbed on the gums are NOT RECOMMENDED.

Most importantly, take your baby to Atlanta Pediatric Dental Specialists by age one to ensure that you are armed with the right information to help comfort your little one – and to set them up for a healthy smile for a lifetime.

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Marietta, GA 30060
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