Parents sometimes have trouble distinguishing between whether their cranky baby is actually ill or is just getting his or her first teeth. Because a baby’s gums may be tender and swollen as their teeth come in, a slight rise in temperature can occur. Other changes may happen as well such as fussiness and increased drooling. All- in –all, babies can be pretty miserable till those first teeth break through.
That said, teething does not cause a full-fledged fever above 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or any other signs of illness according to a new review led by Dr. Michele Bolan, of the Federal University of Santa Catarina, Brazil.
Certain symptoms can be confusing for parents says Dr. Minu George, interim chief of general pediatrics at Cohen Children's Medical Center, in New Hyde Park, N.Y.
"I get questions about this on a daily basis," said George, who was not involved in the study.
When a baby’s temperature reaches 100.4 degrees F or higher, it becomes an actual fever, not just a slight increase in temperature.
"Fevers are not a bad thing," she pointed out. "They're part of the body's response to infection." But, George added, parents should be aware that a fever is likely related to an illness.
Of course, new parents are going to be somewhat edgy when it comes to caring for their infant. It’s a new world of responsibility that can seem overwhelming at times.
Pediatricians and family doctors regularly answer questions about this topic with an explanation of how a typical teething experience presents.
Over the ages, other symptoms have been linked to teething that should never apply. They include sores or blisters around the mouth, appetite loss and diarrhea that does not go away quickly. Any of these symptoms warrant a call to your pediatrician.
Babies differ in age as to when their teeth begin to come in. Typically, the fist tooth begins to erupt around 6 months of age. It can also be as early as 3 months and as late as 1 year of age. There really isn’t a set age for teething to begin, just an average.
Baby’s teeth usually erupt through the gums in a certain order:
· The two bottom front teeth (central incisors)
· The four upper front teeth (central and lateral incisors)
· The two lower lateral incisors
· The first molars
· The four canines (located on either side next to the upper and lower lateral incisors)
· The remaining molars on either side of the existing line of teeth
By age 3, most children have all 20 of their primary teeth.
As for helping babies get through the misery of teething, George advised against medication, including topical gels and products that are labeled "natural" or "homeopathic."
Instead, she said, babies can find relief by chewing on a cooled teething ring or wet washcloth, or eating cool foods.
The analysis was published in the February online edition of the journal Pediatrics.
Sources: Amy Norton, http://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/news/20160218/teething-makes-babies-cranky-but-not-sick-review