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Each child experiences the milestone of teething differently, some breeze through while others suffer the experience for every child and can become a frustrating time for parents. So here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about teething.

How long does teething last?

Baby teeth usually erupt in pairs from the front of the mouth to the back. The average age for teething is 6 months, however teeth can start coming through as early as 3 months and as late as 12 months (There is no need for alarm if teething starts early or a little late).

– By age 3 they should have all of their baby (primary) teeth

– By around age 6 your child will likely start losing them and begin to get their adult teeth.

What causes teething pain?

As your baby’s teeth develop, they push up through the gums, causing irritation, pain and swelling.  Teething is usually associated with pain, however that’s not always the case. Some babies hardly notice when a tooth comes through, for others, it can be a difficult time for baby and parents. 

teething age baby looking confused

Why is teething pain worse at night?

Your baby may seem more bothered by teething pain at night when there are fewer distractions around for them. It’s the same reason adults can feel more chronic pain at night. Sometimes it can be difficult to tell whether your baby’s unsettled behaviour during the night is actually due to teething, so be sure to talk with your health care professional if you have any concerns.

How to help sleep during teething?

CREATE A SOOTHING ENVIROMENT A soothing environment is going to help your baby stay calm. This means low light, soft music or white noise and of course relaxed parents. It’s important to remember that sleep deprivation and handling your emotions go hand in hand. 

RECOGNISE THE CRY There’s a difference between a cry for attention and a cry of pain, and recognising these will help you determine how you soothe.
While it’s important to comfort and soothe your baby during this stage you don’t want to undo your hard work of establishing good nightly routines. Try settling back to sleep with gentle patting or rocking. 

To read tips and information about helping your baby sleep check out: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/HealthyLiving/sleep-and-your-baby

Can teething cause bruising on gums?

Teething can cause bleeding under the gums, which may look like a bluish/red lump or bruise in your baby’s mouth. This is called a teething blister or eruption cyst and may appear before your baby’s tooth cuts through the gum. These blisters usually go away when the tooth appears and don’t need any treatment.  Don’t be tempted to try and pop the blister.

Let your dentist or health professional know if your baby has a blister for a couple of months and no tooth comes.

Why is my baby eating less during teething?

Some babies may find eating uncomfortable when their gums are swollen, while others may want to eat more often to feel the counter-pressure on their gums.  If a hunger strike or nursing strike persists, you should talk to your health care professional.

baby refusing baby food being fed by adult.

What is teething rash?

Drooling is a common symptom of teething. If your baby is drooling, the constant drip may cause chafing, chapping, redness and rashes around their mouth, chin and neck. 

Simply patting the drool away will help keep this at bay. Also changing wet clothing will help.  You can also create a moisture barrier using a gentle, unscented skin cream, there are plenty on the market.

Can you breastfeed while your baby is teething?

Absolutely.  Some babies prefer to nurse more often for the comfort it provides, while for others, the sucking action can make teething pain worse. 

To read more tips and information about breast-feeding visit: https://www.breastfeeding.asn.au/bf-info/common-concerns–baby/biting

When to start brushing baby teeth? 

It is important to care for your baby’s gums even before the first tooth appears. Wiping the gums with a clean, damp facecloth daily will do the trick.   When teeth start to arrive, establish a routine of cleaning them twice a day.

When should your baby visit the dentist? 

It’s a good idea to start seeing the dentist when your baby is around 12 months of age.  While you might think it’s not necessary to book an appointment until your baby has a full set of teeth, which usually takes place by the age of 3, the earlier your child visits the dentist the better.

Usually, your child’s first visit to the dentist will involve the taking of their full medical history, and possible discussions about: Brushing techniques, Bite (how your children’s teeth come together), The risk of decay and how to prevent it 

teething baby rubbing cheek with finger in pain

What is Choline Salicylate (salicylic acid) and Belladonna (found in teething gels)?

CHOLINE SALICLATE is related to Aspirin (salicylic acid) and commonly used in other teething gel formulations. The use of aspirin for children younger than 16 is not recommended because in some children it has been known to cause Reye’s syndrome – a rare but potentially lethal condition that can cause liver and brain damage.

BELLADONNA  commonly known as Deadly Nightshade, it’s leaves and berries are extremely toxic and have been used as both a poison and medicine throughout history.  In 2016, the US Food and Drug Administration raised the alarm about products containing belladonna after there were 400 reports of adverse events, and 10 deaths.  Belladonna has chemicals that can block functions of the body’s nervous system. The body’s response to belladonna in children under two years of age is unpredictable and puts them at unnecessary risk.

Thankfully, Bubbagum Natural Teething gel contains NO NASTY INGREDIENTS. To read a full list of what’s in it – check out our ingredients page. NO SECRETS HERE! 

When to see a doctor about teething symptoms?

Your baby may be uncomfortable but it does not cause serious illness. You know your baby best, if you think these symptoms are connected with an illness, talk to your health care professional. Take your baby to the doctor if your child has a high temperature, diarrhoea, sore ears, is not drinking, or seems unwell.

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Want more information about teething? Our teething signs page has everything to know about teething.

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