During the first year of the baby’s life, the parents are in a constant state of waiting: when the child starts to hold the head, will turn over, start to sit down and stand up, and finally, will say the first word and take the first independent steps. The first baby teeth also bring the greatest joy to moms and dads. At the same time, the first children’s teeth often bring a lot of worries: the baby cries, refuses to eat, does not sleep well. How to help the baby?
The Order of First Dentition
The first teeth that begin to erupt at the age of 5 – 8 months in the lower jaw are primary cutting teeth. Then the central milk cutting teeth on the upper jaw begin to appear. At the age of 9–13 months, side incisors in the upper and lower jaws erupt. At the age of 13–19 months, the first chewing teeth (first milk molar teeth) are cut on the upper and lower jaws. A gap forms between the lateral incisors and the molars, between which a pointed tooth begins to erupt in 16 months. Later, the second chewing tooth (second milk molar) begin to erupt, first on the lower, then on the upper jaws. By 3 years a complete set of milk teeth should be formed.
What Affects the Time of Teething?
There are a number of factors affecting the time of appearance of the baby teeth:
- type of feeding of the child;
- health of the baby;
- mother care.
It happens, the teeth appear in a one-year-old child, and this is also the physiological norm.
It should be noted that the growth of the baby teeth can be affected by the nutrition of mothers in the first weeks of pregnancy, when she is often not aware of her pregnancy.
Symptoms of Teething in a Baby
Symptoms of teething in a child are represented by mood changes, poor sleep, loss of appetite, etc. If babies are breastfed, they often apply to the breast at night. While feeding the baby can bite the breast and pull everything in the mouth. In the oral cavity, reddened, inflamed gums are visible, cheeks might be burning and swollen white ball, from which a tooth is about to appear may also be seen. But the appearance of the first tooth may take a lot of time. Before getting outside, the tooth must first pass through the bone tissue that surrounds it, and then through the gingival mucosa.
Is there a need to help the baby with the process of teething? You should not interfere in the natural course of events, because nature has provided that the teeth of children appear independently, without special efforts from the outside and additional devices. Do not irritate the baby’s gums by scratching them with a piece of sugar or a spoon handle, as many parents did before. You can damage the tender baby teeth and bring the infection into the jaw bone.
During the life, there is a change of 20 teeth into 20 permanent ones. The remaining 8-12 teeth do not change, they are cut initially permanent.
Features of the Period of Teething
Keep in mind that the period of teething is individual for each baby and depends on many factors, such as nutrition, heredity, etc. Therefore, there is no need to worry if the first baby teeth take longer to appear than you expected.
It is difficult to miss when the first teeth appear in children. As the teething progresses, the tooth “stretches” the mucous membrane (the tooth can be felt with a finger under the mucous membrane) and, “breaking through” it turns out to be in the oral cavity. In some children, a bluish “lump” or “ball” with transparent contents is formed on the mucous membrane above the erupting tooth. It is a small eruption cyst, which usually breaks through autonomously WITHOUT outside help, although sometimes the intervention of a pediatric dentist is required.
The first teeth that appear can be placed asymmetrically – this is the norm. Such a dental disorder has the right to exist until the eruption of 16 teeth: milk teeth independently organize as they erupt, aligning each other. This is facilitated by the intake of solid food, the pressure of the tongue and the muscles of the lips.
In the normal milk bite between the milk incisors and canines, gaps are formed (on average 1 mm), which is the norm and a sign that permanent wider incisors will have enough space in the dentition during the period of physiological tooth change. The absence of these gaps indicates a lack of space for permanent teeth.
In most cases, teething does not cause any discomfort to the child, although sometimes the teething process can be accompanied by “itching” of the gums and lead to sleep disturbance in the child, causing a lot of trouble for the child and his parents.
How to Relieve a Toothache in Babies?
Teething in a child is always a big test for the parents. Seeing how their child suffers, mom and dad are on the verge of panic, because the baby does not feel better, even when they hold him/her in their arms.
Unfortunately, there is no tool that would help the tooth to cut through completely painlessly. We can only advise how to help the child during the period when teeth are cut.
In order to alleviate the pain during the period when teething occurs and help the teeth to grow faster, give your baby a special rattle or a cooled tooth ring.
To calm down, the baby needs to suck something: this is the case when a pacifier may be really necessary.
Typical Problems of the First Baby Teeth
A slight rise in body temperature and the appearance of anxiety in children when the first teeth are cut is possible. This is due to minor inflammation and itching of the gums in the area where the teeth are going to erupt. For the relief of unpleasant sensations, it is recommended to treat the oral cavity with special napkins for oral hygiene containing special antiseptic.
The most common problem faced by parents at the age of 12–18 months is “baby bottle tooth decay”, the main cause of which is poor oral hygiene of the child and night feedings. As a result of poor hygiene, a large amount of soft dental plaque is formed on the teeth. Dental plaque contains a large number of bacteria that secrete acid, which “eats away” enamel, leading to the formation of tooth decay.
Night feeding at the age of 12 – 18 months creates the most favorable conditions for the development of tooth decay, because at night saliva secretion is reduced. As a result, the acid of bacteria living in plaque does not neutralize.
In children who are breastfed, the likelihood of tooth decay is lower than in children who are bottle-fed. Breast milk helps to saturate the surface of the teeth with calcium and phosphate ions. Breast milk contains a large number of immunological factors of protection. At the same time, it has been observed that long-lasting night feeding (both breast and bottle feeding) leads to the development of dental caries, especially in the area of the upper front milk teeth.
On the background of poor hygiene and weakening of the immune system, the development of inflammatory diseases of the mucous membrane and stomatitis is possible. Stomatitis in children is a very unpleasant event, accompanied by general malaise, loss of appetite and fever.
The First Visit of a Baby to the Dentist
It is better to visit a dentist when the first tooth is being cut or already erupted. It is necessary to do this so that the doctor can show parents how to properly care for young teeth.
Do not wait for the problems with tooth. Visit the dentist in time. Remember that it is always better to prevent the development of a disease than treat it later.
Also, keep in mind that it is very important to teach your child individual hygiene of the oral cavity from the moment of the appearance of first teeth. Good hygiene of oral cavity is a pledge of healthy teeth from the early childhood.