Did you know that teething is a frequent cause of night-waking for those children under the age of 2? We know how a sleepless night can affect all members of the family so want to offer a few tips to make this time easier. Children often start getting teeth between 6 and 9 months and the last of their teeth may not erupt until after age 2, so for many children (and parents!) this can be a long time to go with disrupted sleep and the other symptoms such as crankiness and poor appetite! Not every child is bothered by teething, and the discomfort can vary for each child. Here are a few tips that can soothe the little one:
• Use a firm teething ring for your baby to chew on. Avoid the fluid-filled rings as they can break or leak.
• Use a clean finger to gently rub the area or chill a clean damp washcloth in the freezer and use that for chewing. Make sure that the washcloth is laundered after each use.
• If your baby is being bottle fed, they may experience some discomfort when sucking. They may prefer to suck from one side or another instead of straight in the front.
• Liquid pain relievers as recommended by your pediatrician, such as Tylenol, can take the edge off and help your child to sleep. Topical pain relievers are generally not recommended because saliva will dilute and rinse them away. Contrary to some folk remedies, any kind of alcoholic beverage is not recommended.
Don’t forget that it’s important for your child to see a pediatric dentist around the age of one. In addition to a brief exam, we will coach you how to best care for your child’s teeth and get them started on the road to a lifetime of dental health. Dr. Laura is an expert at dealing with any resistance on the part of your child. We can make dental care a positive experience for everyone!