Let’s Talk Baby: Teething

The appearance of primary teeth is commonly called ‘teething’. Many babies experience some discomfort during teething. Most babies are irritable when new teeth break through their gums.

Signs and symptoms of teething can include:

  • Frequent crying and crankiness
  • A mild fever
  • Reddened cheeks and drooling
  • Loss of or reduced appetite
  • Mild diarrhea
  • Sucking or gnawing on toys
  • Pulling the ear on the same side as the erupting tooth

It is extremely important not to ignore symptoms such as fever and diarrhea in your child. If these symptoms occur, seek medical advice to eliminate other reasons for the symptoms.

  • Wash your hands and gently rub your baby’s gums with a clean finger
  • Give your baby a teething ring or wet washcloth to bite. Teething rings can be chilled in the refrigerator before being used to help manage discomfort associated with teething (do not put teething rings in the freezer)
  • Give your baby non-sweetened rusks to chew on

Signs and symptoms may appear and disappear over several days.

Ask your dentist or pharmacist for advice before using any pain relief specifically created for babies and toddlers. Never give aspirin to a baby or young child.