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Baby Teething: What You Need to Know

baby teething

Baby Teething: What You Need to Know

The first year of your baby’s life will be full of milestones. These milestones include walking, talking, and, most likely, the appearance of a first tooth. While all of these milestones are natural, teething can be worrisome for some parents.

According to Bruce Vafa DDS, a West Hollywood children’s dentist, when your baby’s teeth burst forth, the front incisors are typically the first you will see. The bottom two front teeth are generally first. However, the top two front teeth will sometimes emerge first. The canines will come through next, but the eight molars will come between the ages of one and three.

During this time, a baby can be fussy and irritable. Some babies will even drool extensively during tooth eruption. It can be a frustrating experience when you try to soothe the baby during this time. With more information, you can reduce the frustration and increase the soothing.

Signs Your Baby is Teething

According to a variety of West Hollywood children’s dentists, teeth can come out one at a time, or they can appear in pairs or sets. When your baby is born, he or she has 20 primary teeth below the gum line.

During the ages of six and 12 months, these teeth begin to erupt from the gum line. Before the tooth is visible, sometimes, a baby will show signs of teething. One of the most common symptoms is fussiness or irritability.

Other signs are sleeping difficulty, decreased appetite, and drooling. All of the above symptoms can also be associated with other issues. However, babies also tend to rub their sore gums. They also will suck or bite to help ease the pain.

Safe Remedies

Some West Hollywood dentist will recommend a variety of safe remedies for your baby. Bruce Vafa DDS has a lot of experience when it comes to helping soothe a baby when he or she is teething. He recommends using remedies that include pain medication, toys, rings, and cold chewing rags.


A few teething toys can be a great help during the teething process. However, you should pay attention to the material of the toy and how to wash the toy. Your baby will continuously put this toy into his or her mouth.

You will want to ensure you can prevent mold from growing inside or outside the toy. With safety in mind, you should also ensure the design and materials are safe for your baby before giving him or her the toy.


A cold teething ring is one of the classic remedies for teething. This long-lasting remedy provides your baby with something cold and safe to chew. The pressure from chewing this ring will also help to soothe painful gums.

Cold Chewing Rags

If you are uncomfortable with rings or toys, the cool washrag is another excellent option. Your baby will get relief by chewing on a cold, clean washcloth. You can wet any clean washcloth and put it in a plastic bag. Then, place the bag into the refrigerator for a soothing treat for your baby.

Pain Medication

When you ask a West Hollywood children dentist, he or she will tell you it is okay to give a baby some types of painkillers. The baby must be older than six months, however. Bruce Vafa DDS recommends Tylenol (acetaminophen) or Motrin (ibuprofen).

However, some West Hollywood dentist recommend to only give a dose right before bedtime if the baby is fussy. It is not the best idea to give painkillers to a baby around the clock. You should also consult the manufacturer’s label to ensure the dosage for your baby’s weight.

Unsafe Remedies

When your baby is teething, your primary goal is to ease your precious baby’s pain. You will ask for advice from a variety of sources. However, Bruce Vafa DDS recommends avoiding some items which can be harmful to your child.


Benzocaine is a topical numbing cream found in medicines such as Orajel. Many mothers in the past have used this effective remedy for teething. However, Benzocaine is associated with methemoglobinemia.

This serious condition can lead to death in babies under two years old. According to the US Food and Drug Administration, it would be best if you only used Orajel under the supervision of a doctor.

Amber necklaces

Another recommendation you may hear is to give the baby an amber necklace. These necklaces come from the Baltic region and contain succinic acid. Some people believe that Succinic acid has a dampening effect when it comes to pain from teething. However, research does not back this theory.

Most doctors would suggest that necklaces provide a choking and strangling hazards to babies. If beaded jewelry breaks, the small beads also pose a choking hazard. If you decide to use amber necklaces, it would be best not to put the baby in a bed or else supervision would not happen.


Between the ages of one and three, your baby will develop a full set of baby teeth. This set means that teething has come to an end. However, it also represents the start of daily oral care for your child.

One of the first steps to help guide your child’s oral care is to start before he or she has teeth. A teeth-cleaning regimen can begin as soon as the baby is born. After each feeding, you can apply slight pressure to your child’s gums.

You can use a piece of gauze or washcloth for this cleaning. The washcloth will remove the leftover milk and clean the gum pad. This process will ease the way for brushing teeth later and help ease the pain associated with teething.

After the teeth have erupted, you should brush your infant’s teeth. You can use a baby toothbrush with fluoride toothpaste. West Hollywood children dentist recommend using only a grain of rice size of toothpaste. You should complete this process twice a day.

When discussing teething, you should remember that every case is different. With years of experience and a wealth of knowledge, Bruce Vafa can help. If you are concerned about your baby’s teeth or have questions about teething, call Dr. Vafa today for a complimentary dental evaluation.

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