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Teething in children and tips for the relief of your little ones

Teething is an important milestone in the life of every child and brings with it joys and challenges for parents. Baby teeth not only help children with eating and speech, but also prepare the way for future permanent teeth. Proper care for them is therefore also key.

What are baby teeth?

Baby teeth, also known as temporary teeth, are the first set of teeth to appear in a baby's mouth. These teeth are essential for the proper development of speaking and chewing and have a key role in the overall development of the child. Baby teeth usually begin to erupt between the sixth month and the first year of a child's life and gradually develop into a full set of 20 teeth.

Although these teeth are temporary and will gradually be replaced by permanent teeth, they have an important function in maintaining the correct arrangement and space in the mouth for the following permanent teeth. Caring for baby teeth is therefore extremely important to prevent tooth decay, which could affect the health of permanent teeth in the future.

The teeth usually appear in a specific order, starting with the central incisors in the lower jaw, followed by those in the upper jaw. Lateral incisors, first and second molars arrive later, giving children a complete set of baby teeth.

Signs and symptoms of teething

Teething in children is often accompanied by various signs and symptoms that can be easily recognized by parents. Common symptoms include increased salivation, need to bite or chew hard objects, irritability and sometimes difficulty sleeping. Some children may show signs of discomfort or pain in the gum area, which may be slightly swollen and tender to the touch.

A mild fever and slight flushing of the cheeks may also be present, but a higher fever is usually no longer directly related to teething and should be investigated by a doctor. To alleviate these inconveniences, parents can use several useful tools.

Teething can be uncomfortable for children, but there are several ways to provide relief. Cool chew rings or clean, wet cloths chilled in the refrigerator can help relieve pain and swelling of the gums. Gentle gum massage with a clean finger or gauze also brings relief. In the case of severe pain, it is possible to use children's analgesic gels, which are commonly available in pharmacies, after consultation with a doctor. Maintaining regular hygiene and offering cold foods can also help the child feel better during this challenging time.

Common problems like gingivitis or night waking can worry parents. In these cases, it is advisable to consult a pediatric dentist who can offer specific advice or treatment.

Caring for teeth during growth

Dental care from the first teething days is key to the healthy development of a child's teeth. As soon as the first tooth appears, it is important to start cleaning it regularly. Use a soft children's toothbrush to gently clean the teeth and gums. This habit helps remove plaque and food debris, minimizing the risk of tooth decay.

In addition to brushing the teeth, it is good to introduce the child to the dentist as soon as possible, ideally within the first year of life. Regular check-ups help ensure that the teeth are developing properly and allow the dentist to intervene early on potential problems.

How to teach a child to brush his teeth

Teaching a child to brush their teeth requires patience and consistency. Start by showing your child how you brush your own teeth so that he can imitate your steps. Choose a small, soft toothbrush and a small amount of children's toothpaste with a flavor that the child will like.

Teach them in a playful way how to hold the toothbrush correctly and how to clean each tooth using gentle circular movements. Praise them for any progress, which will strengthen their motivation to continue good oral hygiene. It is also important to brush teeth together so that the child develops a routine and approaches brushing teeth as a pleasant daily activity.

The growth of teeth is a natural development process, but it requires our attention and care. Make sure your child has enough support during this period and don't forget regular visits to the dentist.