Questions And Answers About Teething

Dentist Blog

Baby teeth, also known as the primary teeth, first start to appear between the first 4 to 15 months after birth. You may not know what to expect or how to care for them. Here are a few questions and answers to help prepare you for teething:

What is the normal eruption sequence?

Normally, the central incisors (the central two front teeth of the upper and lower jaws) appear first. The lateral incisors (the teeth on either side of the two central teeth) appear next. Then, the first molars erupt, followed by the canines. The last primary teeth to appear are the second molars. It's normal for the lower teeth to start erupting before the upper.

The shedding process of the primary teeth, which starts around age six follows a similar pattern. The first teeth to be lost are usually the first that erupted.

Don't be alarmed if your child's teeth don't erupt in the expected sequence. Each child is different. Still, if your child's first tooth has not erupted by the time they reach a year and a half, it may best to visit a pediatric dentist at a clinic like Smile Builders - Robyn Lesser DMD for an evaluation. 

What are the symptoms of teething?

There are signs that your child will display to indicate he or she is teething. Here are a few of them:

  • Drooling
  • Chewing on objects
  • Crying and crankiness
  • Sore and tender gums

How can you relieve teething symptoms?

Here are few ways to reduce your child's teething discomfort:

  • Rub your baby's gums with a clean finger or damp gauze pad.
  • Chill (do not freeze) a gel-filled teeth toy and give to your baby to chew on.
  • Give your child a liquid pain reliever or apply a numbing gel to your child's gums.

How do you care for your child's new teeth?

Once the new teeth have appeared, here are few measures you should take to protect them:

  • Don't leave a bottle in your child's mouth while he or she is falling asleep. The juice or milk will pool in the mouth and cause cavities.
  • Use a very soft small-headed toothbrush to clean your baby's gums and teeth.
  • Give your child water instead of milk, especially after a meal, so the water can rinse away food particles.
  • Once your child's first tooth has erupted, schedule a visit with a pediatric dentist every six months. The dentist will teach you how to keep your child's teeth and gums healthy, and identify and correct any problems before they become too severe.

To find out more about how to care for your child's teeth and their eruption process, visit a local pediatric dentist. 


17 March 2016