Saturday, April 16, 2005

Teething

Teething is a long, drawn out process and affects every baby a little differently. Some are cranky for days or even weeks as a tooth pushes its way up through the gums. Others are happy until the day before a tooth makes its appearance, when they suddenly cry, fuss and are generally miserable.

The thing that makes it most difficult for parents is that there is no way to tell what symptoms the process of teething is responsible for until a tooth is nearly to the surface or already poking through.

Watching for common symptoms can provide some clues. Many babies chew things more voraciously when they are teething or place their hands in their mouths. Often, they start drooling more than usual, and may even show symptoms of a cold such as a runny nose or slight fever. Any continuing or high fever should be checked by a doctor, but keep in mind that mild symptoms can be caused by cutting teeth.

What can you do to help your baby with discomfort during teething? For many, a little infant Tylenol will work wonders. For others, a homeopathic remedy such as Hyland's Teething tablets offers soothing relief. Do not give your child frozen items to chew since they may be too hard; however a hard plastic or rubber toy intended for teething is just fine. Also, look for a vibrating teether; the gentle vibrating motion is pleasurable for many babies when their mouths are sore.

Most importantly, give your baby love, comfort and a little extra TLC. This, like all other things will soon pass.

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