If you are lucky, teething will be a pain free experience for your baby. For some babies however, the experience can be extremely painful. Given that the teething process involves the movement of teeth through gums on a newly developed jawbone, it is likely that your baby will experience some discomfort at some stage of the teething process. The following teething symptoms are among the most common:
- A slightly raised temperature – use a baby thermometer to check your baby’s temperature is not at fever levels of 38°c or above.
- Excessive dribbling – drooling is a common symptom of teething as the gums produce extra saliva to provide lubrication for teeth coming through.
- Facial rash – as a consequence of excessive dribbling, facial rashes are common during teething, especially around the chin and mouth.
- Sore, reddened gums – as teeth come through the gums, baby will rub them to relieve the pain. Small blisters may appear and there may even be some light bleeding.
- Poor appetite – the pain and discomfort of teething will put your baby off food for a while. Be sure they get plenty of fluids and encourage them with treats like ice lollies.
- Chewing – chewing helps baby ease the pain of teething. To protect your fingers, you may want to invest in some teethers.
- Irritability – the pain of teething will turn your bundle of joy irritable, grumpy and restless. Disturbed sleep is common – for baby and parents!
While the above teething symptoms are totally normal, you should also watch out for the following symptoms, which may be a sign of a more serious problem.
- Vomiting and diarrhoea – while this may be a natural side effect of excessive dribbling, it may be a sign of a stomach infection and if persistent vomiting occurs, you should consult your doctor.
- Earache – this may be due to the development of baby’s jawbone, but it could be a sign of an ear infection. If it is persistent, worsens and effects hearing, consult your doctor.
- Fever – A temperature of 38°c or above indicates fever. While a slight rise in temperature is normal during teething, fever is likely the symptom of another condition and you should contact our doctor.
- Coughing – common during teething, coughing is caused by excess dribble and mucus running down baby’s throat and irritating the throat and chest. If the cough is persistent and accompanied by other symptoms such as high temperature, you should contact your doctor.
For more information about teething symptoms, you may want to view our teething remedies page.