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Teething Information

To view our range of teething products please visit our main teething page.

About Teething

Teething Advice
Teething is a natural part of a young child's development. These first teeth, known as deciduous, primary, baby or milk teeth, usually develop while your child is growing inside the womb. Typically, these first teeth begin to emerge when the baby is 6-9 months old. It is usually the bottom front teeth that come through first, followed by the top front teeth, then the top and bottom incisors. Your child's complete set of 20 primary teeth should be in place by the time they reach two and a half years of age.

There are no hard and fast rules to the rate at which these teeth will emerge; some children might not get their first tooth until they are more than a year old and occasionally, a child will be born with one tooth or more already in place, or a child will develop a tooth a few weeks after birth. This shouldn't prove to be a problem for the child, unless they are very loose or will interfere with feeding. If this is the case, the tooth/teeth will need to be removed.

Contrary to popular belief, the emerging teeth do not actually cut through the gums, instead, the baby's body releases a chemical that causes sections of the gums to die and separate. This allows the new teeth to emerge without causing unnecessary discomfort. Teething should not prove to be a big problem for your child, but some children however, seem to cope with it better than others.

Teething at a Glance

  • A baby's first teeth will appear at around 6-9 months of age.
  • This set of primary, deciduous teeth (20 in total) should be fully present by 30 months of age (two and a half years).
  • The first signs of teething will appear before a baby's first tooth emerges.
  • A teething child will more grouchy and fretful. They will also chew, gnaw and dribble more than usual.
  • Gums appear red and sore and there maybe be flushing in one cheek.

    Teething Troubles

    As mentioned earlier, some children seem to cope with teething much better than others. In fact, some will show very view signs of teething at all. For other children however, the experience may be a painful one. Some teeth emerge from the gum with no trouble, while some emerging teeth will make the gum red and sore where they are trying to push through. All babies handle pain differently, but it is likely that your child will get restless and irritable at some point during the teething process.

    Teething Symptoms

    If your child is teething, then chances are that they will appear grouchy, fretful and chew, gnaw and dribble a lot more than normal.

    Teething gets the blame for a variety of different complaints, from rashes to crying, vomiting, colic, bad temper, feverish temperature, runny noses, diarrhoea and nappy rash. There is no proven link between these conditions and teething, so it is very important that you don't put your baby's discomfort solely down to this. Any of these symptoms could be signs of a different problem or illness. If you are unsure what is causing your child's suffering, you should always consult a healthcare professional.

    Generally, the first signs of teething will begin to appear before your baby's first tooth emerges. Some signs to look out for include:

  • sore, red gums
  • increased fretfulness and irritability
  • flushed cheeks, usually one more so than the other
  • slight rise in temperature (though not above 39 degrees Celsius)
  • possible loss of appetite
  • excessive dribbling
  • an increased desire to chew and gnaw

    Excessive dribbling may cause a sore chin with a rash or chapped skin. If this is the case, a barrier cream or moisturiser regularly applied to the skin should keep it from getting worse. We have a range of suitable barrier creams in our nappy rash section. Metanium and Sudocrem are some of the brands worth considering, as is a petroleum jelly product such as Vaseline.

    Soothing Teething Pains

    If you child is suffering from teething pains, there are several ways to help:

    Comforting can make a difference, simply cuddling your baby will help to make them feel secure and provide relief.

    Teething rings allow your baby to ease their teething pain by chewing or gnawing. Some such as the Bonjela Teething Ring can be cooled in the fridge prior to use to provide soothing relief. Some parents prefer to let their children chew their fingers (clean of course).

    Teething gels containing local anaesthetic, such as Anbesol Teething Gel, Bonjela Teething Gel and Calgel Teething Gel, can be rubbed on your child's gums to provide comfort from the soreness and irritation caused by teething. To help protect the new teeth, sugar-free brands are recommended.

    An infant pain relief product can be given to a child to help ease the pain of teething. A sugar-free paracetamol suspension, such as Calpol Sugar-Free Infant Suspension, is a good idea as this will also help to reduce a high temperature. Other infant pain relief products suitable for teething pain are Nurofen for Children, Calpol Sugar-Free Infant Suspension Sachets and Calprofen 3 Month Plus Ibuprofen Suspension. Be sure to select a product suitable for your child's age.

    There are other treatments that can be used to help your baby cope with teething. Ashton and Parsons Infants' Powders can be applied directly to the tongue to provide symptomatic relief of pain and gastric upset, while Nelsons Teetha Teething Granules provide soothing and calming homeopathic relief to lessen the discomfort of cutting teeth. Bickiepegs Teething Biscuits are made with all natural ingredients and are specially shaped and hardened to satisfy the bite that emerging teeth are seeking; they contain no added salt or sugar.

    Please Remember

    Teething is not believed to be an indicator of your child's development, so don't worry if your baby's first teeth appear later or earlier then the ages mentioned at the start article.

    Also, teething is a natural process, just like growing hair. Any adverse symptoms or condition being displayed by your baby shouldn't be simply dismissed as teething troubles. If you are unsure, always check with your doctor.

    To view our range of teething products please visit our main teething page.
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