The average baby will celebrate the arrival of his or her first tooth around six months of age. But just as your baby will hit other milestones at his or her own pace, so too will teeth come on their own timeline. While six months is the average, there is a wide range of ages for that first tooth to appear. Though rare, some infants may be born with one or even two teeth, while others’ teeth take well over a year to show up.
Typically, the two bottom-front teeth will appear first, progressing until the second molars arrive, usually between 2 to 2.5 years old. “Typically by two-and-a-half, most children have all of their baby teeth in, which is about 20 teeth.
There isn’t generally an age to be concerned if teeth haven’t appeared because all babies have their own schedules. Even in the case of missing teeth, when a tooth or two is absent, parents need not be concerned. “Just because they’re missing teeth doesn’t mean that we need to do anything about it, and certainly there isn’t anything we can do about it at that early age,”
How do you know when teeth are on their way?
Common signs include mild irritability, drooling, an occasional low-grade fever and this seeming need to constantly be chewing on something.
But while some kids do experience discomfort with teething, there are children who aren’t bothered by the process. There are a lot of children where the parents will oftentimes not even realize that they’re teething at all,It just varies from child to child as to what symptoms they might have or if they even have any symptoms of teething.”
Some parents start expecting teeth once that signature drooling begins, but drooling can start months before the first tooth arrives. Because teething is a process, teeth don’t arrive all of a sudden. Instead, teeth push their way through in starts and stops.
How to Ease Discomfort
Some babies are not bothered by the process of teething, but for those who are there are several options available to ease everyone’s pain:
parents better try non-medicinal methods first, which includes giving the child something clean and safe to chew on, like a teething ring. If plastics are of a concern to parents, give the child a clean cloth to chew. Wet the cloth, squeeze out the excess water, and throw it in a baggie in the refrigerator or freezer. The chill from the rag as the baby chews on it will help relieve the irritation. Also, be careful that the baby is chewing on age-appropriate items without small parts that could be choking hazards.
Stick with these tried and true methods (avoiding outdated methods of coping, such as dipping a pacifier in sugar or honey, which can cause tooth decay). Parents can also rub a clean finger on the gum surface to bring relief to the child as well.
If you choose to go for a pain reliever, there are over-the-counter options available. There are gels and liquids that can be applied to the gums to soothe them. The American Academy of Pediatrics states that medications that you rub on the gums are not necessary or useful because they wash out of the baby’s mouth within minutes-and some can be harmful if overused and your baby swallows too much. Check with your pediatrician for the correct dosage for infant pain relievers and if at any point there are extreme fever spikes or extreme irritability on the part of the child.
Dr Doaa Faisal Mufleh.
Sometimes a child will develop an eruption hematoma; a bruise in the mouth where a tooth is erupting. As the tooth starts to push its way in, there can be a bit of bleeding underneath the gums. Don’t be concerned if you find a bit of blood on your child’s sheets one morning. “It’s just that that erupting tooth finally popped the eruption hematoma, and your child obviously is sleeping with their mouth open and drooling a little bit in their sleep.