Can Teething Cause Fevers?
Understanding The Teething Process
When your baby’s teeth begin to grow in, they may experience some mild pain and discomfort due to sore gums. They cannot verbalize their pain to you, but they will likely show certain signs of discomfort.
These signs are one of the main ways that you know your baby is teething, and while they come in many forms, it is important to be aware of what is and is not caused by the teething process. Let’s take a look.
Symptoms of Teething: What’s True and What’s Something Else?
Symptoms of teething may vary slightly for different children, but staying aware of the most common misconceptions can help you more easily recognize when there is a bigger problem happening.
Proven Symptoms of Teething
Symptoms of teething that have been proven to be a direct result of the process include:
- Drooling as a result of increased saliva
- Rashes on the face caused by the increase in drooling
- Gnawing or chewing on fingers, hands, and anything in reach
- Gum pain is typically mild and usually just leads to your baby being a little more grumpy, irritable, and fussy than usual.
All of these symptoms are highly common, and you can definitely expect to see at least a couple of them when your baby’s teeth start to erupt.
“False” Symptoms of Teething
There are also plenty of misconceptions surrounding the teething process and what it might entail, and one of the biggest misconceptions is that teething can cause a fever.
While teething may sometimes make your baby’s temperature rise, it will never surpass a low-grade temperature, and anything over 100 degrees F should not be attributed to teething.
One study of over 3,500 children under the age of 3, and only found an association between teething and fever in some cases. Teething may raise your baby’s temperature by a degree or two, and it is possible that parents sometimes refer to this rise in temperature as a fever out of concern. Any doubts or concerns you may have should be discussed with your pediatrician.
Other “false” symptoms include:
- A major increase in the frequency of your baby’s crying
- Making your baby more prone to getting sick
- Runny nose
If your baby is exhibiting these symptoms you should be mindful of the fact that these are all major symptoms of a cold or other illness.
That said, always take the safer route and consult your pediatrician if you think something is up! It never hurts to play it safe, especially when it comes to your baby’s health.
If you find that your baby is crying a lot, you should also not assume that this is because of teething alone. This kind of crying could be a sign that your baby has an ear infection or a more serious illness, so if they are often visibly upset it is a good idea to talk to your doctor.
My Baby is Teething… How Can I Ease Their Symptoms?
If your little one seems to be struggling with the teething process, there are a few things you can do to lessen their discomfort. More often than not, the gums around the erupting teeth will become red, swollen, and tender, and this is likely what is causing the bulk of your baby’s discomfort… so, let’s help them out.
Ways that you can soothe their discomfort include:
- Gently rubbing or massaging the gumswhere they are swollen using one of your fingers. Make sure to thoroughly wash your hands before and after taking advantage of this method!
- Teething rings can make a big difference,especially if they are solid and made of rubber. Try to avoid liquid-filled teething rings, as these can be punctured by your baby’s new, sharp teeth. Rubber teething rings are great because they have a little bit of give to them, meaning they won’t be so hard that they cause even more pain.
- You can also opt for a wet, twisted-up washcloth. To try this method, dampen a washcloth, twist it, and freeze it. You can then give the frozen washcloth to your baby and let them chew on it, or you can use it to massage their gums. Either way, this method may be a great way to bring some relief.
- If your child has been introduced to solid foods, another great method is to give them pieces of frozen bananas or frozen berries. These make for a yummy snack and are a fun way to soothe their irritated gums.
In some cases, these methods may not be enough to calm your baby’s symptoms, especially if they are having a particularly rough night.
When this happens, some medicine may be in order -- but stay away from any medicine that requires you to rub the product on your baby’s gums! These medicines may cause more harm than good and can be dangerous if your child swallows excess amounts.
Instead, opt for an effective pain reliever with acetaminophen like Genexa’s Kids’ Pain & Fever oral suspension. Genexa is the first clean medicine brand, founded by two dads who are committed to bringing you real, clean medicine that you can trust. Genexa’s medicines are made with the active ingredients you need, and without the artificial inactive ingredients you don’t need, because you and your kids deserve the best.
Before trying out any new medicine, you should consult your pediatrician, especially if your child is under 2 years of age. Your pediatrician will be able to guide you in terms of dosages, and they can answer questions or concerns you might have.
Cleaning the New Teeth
When your little one’s new teeth are finally visible, you should take care to clean them with a nice, soft kids’ toothbrush. Making sure to never let your baby fall asleep with a bottle, either at night or during naptime, can help you prevent any cavities by keeping milk from pooling around the new teeth. It’s that simple!
The Bottom Line
Fevers are not directly linked to teething, and if your child does spike a fever, it is important to get in touch with your pediatrician. Fevers are one of the biggest misconceptions when it comes to the symptoms of teething, because teething can, in fact, raise your baby’s body temperature… but only by one or two degrees.
A good rule of thumb is that if your baby’s temperature is over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, you should consult your pediatrician because it is highly likely that a cold or other illness is the culprit, not teething.
Common symptoms of teething include an increase in drooling, chewing and gnawing on hands and fingers, and swollen and red gums at the site of the tooth eruption. These are all proven symptoms of teething. On the other hand, symptoms that indicate that your baby should see a doctor include fever, diarrhea, a runny nose, and a big increase in crying. These are indications that something else is wrong, and your pediatrician will be able to guide you.
You can ease any of the discomfort your baby faces while teething by offering them a solid rubber teething ring, massaging their gums with your finger, offering them a cold washcloth, or using acetaminophen.