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Dental and Oral Health (Children)

How to treat babies when tooth process begins

02/22/2008

Question:

Hi,I just want to ask that what is the best way to handle babies when they are about to start thier tooth beginning process as it is the very cruecial time for them and they become irritating,feel uneasy and also lose-motion starts to some babies as they try to put everything in thier mouth.

Answer:

Thanks for the great question. You are correct, teething can be a difficult time for children - the key is patience and understanding from the parent. Sleep, bowel and even feeding habits may be upset during this time.

Over-the-counter pain medication such as Tylenol (never give a child under age 18 aspirin unless a doctor specifically recommends) can be helpful, but it is easy to give a child 'too much' and a pediatrician/dentist should be consulted. Cold rags and commercially available teething rings, particularly those that can be cooled in the freezer, seem to help. If a child starts pulling at their ears, make sure to rule out an ear infection. Make sure the child gets plenty of fluid as they may not want to eat, and dehydration is a potential risk.

Most babies get through teething with very little problem. You may notice increased drooling and maybe some crankiness at times, but teething doesn't cause fevers, diarrhea or rashes. 

Most children, as I mentioned, will need a good dose of understanding and attention during this difficult time.

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Response by:

Sarath  Thikkurissy, DDS, MS Sarath Thikkurissy, DDS, MS
Formerly:
Associate Professor of Pediatric Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University

Dennis J McTigue, DDS Dennis J McTigue, DDS
Professor of Pediatric Dentistry
College of Dentistry
The Ohio State University