Drooling, crankiness and tears can make teething a stressful time for parents and babies alike. Courtesy of Baby Center and the Mayo Clinic, here’s a rough guideline to help you better predict the arrival of your baby’s new teeth that may help soothe your baby during the process.
4 to 7 months – Teething begins. Your baby’s gums may be swollen and red where the teeth are cutting through. The first teeth to erupt are usually the two middle ones on the bottom (lower central incisors). These two teeth usually arrive at about the same time.
8 to 12 months Upper middle teeth (the upper central incisors) emerge.
9 to 16 months – Top and bottom teeth right next to the middle teeth (lower lateral incisors) make their appearance.
Teeth usually emerge in pairs – one on the right and one on the left.
Remember that it’s perfectly normal for a baby’s first tooth to show up a little early, or a few months after his or her first birthday. In fact, some babies are even born with teeth!
Throughout these stages you may notice your baby drooling more than usual and chewing on just about anything they can get their hands on. Offer your baby a cold washcloth or a teething ring to help soothe swollen gums. Ideally, you can run a clean, damp washcloth over your baby’s gums every day to keep bacteria from building up.
When your baby’s first teeth appear, switch to a small, soft-bristled toothbrush. Until your child learns to spit, at about three-years-old, use a smear of fluoride toothpaste no bigger than the size of a grain of rice to brush your child’s teeth.
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