Teething Trouble-Ear ache and Runny Nose
Teething can be a painful experience for your baby and an important milestone in child’s development
1. Irritability and bad temper: As the new tooth rises closer to the surface your baby’s gums may become increasingly more sore and painful, leading to fussiness and crying.
2. Drooling and chin rash From three to four months of age you may see your baby start drooling more often than normal. Teething stimulates drooling, which may be worse with some babies than others. If your baby is a heavy drooler, the constant contact with saliva may cause the skin around the chin and mouth to become irritated.
3. Biting & gnawing: A teething baby will gnaw and gum down on anything. The counter pressure from biting helps relieve the pressure from under the gums and temporarily numbs the pain. Teething aids designed specifically for babies are safe and effective.
4. Ear ache and pulling: Pain in the gums may spread to the ears and cheeks particularly when the back molars begin coming in. This is why you may see your baby rubbing their cheeks or pulling at their ears. However, keep in mind that pulling at an ear can also be a sign of an ear infection, especially when accompanied by a fever.
5. Diarrhea: Most parents usually notice slightly looser bowel movements when a baby is teething. A recent study done by the Children’s Hospital in Australia found this to be the most common symptom of teething, yet many doctors still disagree and discount diarrhea as a symptom of teething. The most likely cause of diarrhea during teething is the extra saliva swallowed, which then loosens the stool. Report any diarrhea that lasts for more than three bowel movements to your doctor.
7. Crankiness and Trouble sleeping .You may find your child wakes more often at night. Most parents agree that night waking occurs more frequently when the molars are coming in.
6. Low-grade fever: A fever is another symptom that doctors are sometimes hesitant to directly link with teething. Many parents however find their baby gets a low-grade fever while teething. Notify your doctor if the temperature rises above 39C (102F) or if the temperature remains elevated for more than 2 days.
8. Cold like symptoms -runny nose and nasal congestion: Some parents find that their baby displays cold-like symptoms when teething. Runny noses, coughing and general cold symptoms are believed to be a result of frequent hand-to-mouth movements in an attempt to alleviate the pain. Notify your doctor if cold-like symptoms occur for more than 3 days and do not improve on their own.
What can be done?
Let your child chew on a cold, hard object, such as a teething ring. The coldness helps ease the discomfort and the hardness will speed up the eruption of the tooth.
Massaging your child’s gums with a clean finger can help reduce pain and discomfort during teething.
Teething gels or ointments are used to numb the gums and reduce the discomfort.
Medicine – If your baby is having trouble sleeping or is especially cranky, acetaminophen or ibuprofen may help. Paracetamol might help if your baby has a fever. Check to ensure the medicine is suitable for a baby of your child’s age. Decongestants (Phenergan, Dimotap) also help to reduce nasal congestion.
Ear Drops. Most children have to be examined to rule out any fungal or bacterial infection of the ear. An analgesic ear drops will help to ease the pain.