Although watching a baby grow and learn is a rewarding experience for parents, certain points during a young child's development are not as pleasant as others. When a baby begins teething, for instance, parents may have a difficult time distinguishing between normal symptoms of teething and those of a more serious illness, such as a cold virus. While the challenges of teething are simply part of baby growing up, if any symptoms seem extreme, consult a doctor.
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Developing a Fever
Whether teething causes a fever has been an ongoing source of debate for doctors and parents. While many doctors concede that teething can produce low-grade fevers, any body temperature reading higher than 101 degrees is more likely an indicator of an illness that will require professional medical treatment. The irritation and inflammation a baby experiences during teething can make her more susceptible to infections that will require a trip to the pediatrician.
The discomfort caused by tiny teeth breaking through sensitive gums can create sleep problems with babies. For instance, even a child who has otherwise slept blissfully through night will likely have trouble sleeping peacefully while dealing with sore gums and achy facial muscles. Chances are, teething babies will frequently wake up cranky. Wakefulness at night is a normal part of teething and is not necessarily a symptom of a cold.
While babies are teething, the movement of the teeth within their gums causes sensitivity within many of their facial features. When the teeth move, the tissue around them can become irritated and inflamed, causing soreness. Parents may notice babies chewing on more objects, drooling more, and rubbing their ears and mouths in order to alleviate the pain teething can cause. Excessive drool can sometimes cause an uncomfortable red rash to develop on baby's face. You can prevent this rash by frequently, gently wiping away drool with a clean, soft cloth.
Changes in Eating Habits
When a new tooth is trying to push its way up through a baby's gums, it causes inflammation and sensitivity in his mouth. This can result in his refusing even his favorite foods at normal mealtimes. This is a common symptom of teething that does not necessarily mean baby is suffering from an illness like the cold virus. Allowing baby to chew on a cool washcloth or teething ring may help relieve discomfort and make eating easier for him.