Should you be worried about your child's teething fever?
Teething fever is commonly considered a typical symptom of the appearance of milk teeth. However, there are no studies that would confirm this thesis. What’s with that teething fever? What is worth knowing about it? When is it acceptable and when should it be disturbing?
A teething fever usually does not worry parents because it is treated like a natural thing. Meanwhile, experts are of the opinion that fever is not a typical symptom of tooth eruption. Only an elevated temperature (up to 37.8 degrees Celsius) is acceptable, which persists on the day of tooth eruption, although it may last up to 3 days.
Teething fever and other symptoms
Teething, i.e. eruption of an infant ‘s first milk teeth , although it is a natural process and a normal stage of dentition development, is usually not pleasant for both toddlers and their parents. There are many ailments associated with it. The appearance of milk teeth in a child may be accompanied by more or less severe general and local symptoms.
Studies carried out at the Department of Pediatric Dentistry in Warsaw have shown that the appearance of the first teeth is most often accompanied by symptoms such as:
- biting hard objects,
- profuse salivation,
- child anxiety,
- sleep disturbances, waking up more often at night
- lack of appetite due to pain.
Other symptoms of teething include:
- low-grade fever ,
- irritability, whining, tearfulness,
- swelling, redness, softening of the gums,
Milk teeth are the first generation of teeth. Their buds appear in utero, although they usually begin to grow around 6 months of age. The milk moths grow in a specific order and the entire eruption process usually takes 2 years. The time of tooth eruption is genetically determined.
Why Teething Fever Can Happen?
A low-grade fever or a slight fever in an infant during teething may occur because the tooth has to press through a tight gap in the bone and then through the gum, which causes inflammation and, consequently, an increase in body temperature.
In most children , during the eruption of the first milk teeth, an increase in temperature of up to 37.8 degrees Celsius is observed, but this is not considered a fever. Fever, i.e. the temperature above 38.5 degrees Celsius, is therefore not closely related to the process of tooth eruption. This is not confirmed by the results of most scientific studies.
In the context of teething fever, it is not without significance that the eruption of the first teeth in infants coincides with the expiration of the immunity acquired from the mother. This is why infections are more common in the second half of the first year of life and can cause fever. The eruption of the first teeth may coincide with one of them.
How long can a fever last?
The increased temperature associated with teething may only occur on the day of the eruption of the tooth. If the infant’s low-grade fever lasts longer or there is a high fever, it is an indication to see a doctor.
High fever with teething
The child’s body temperature during tooth eruption should not exceed 37.8 degrees Celsius. Thus, a fever during teething (body temperature above 38.5 degrees Celsius) may indicate an infection. It is advisable to visit a doctor.
When should a fever be a concern?
Teething and a fever are a topic that should get parents’ attention. They should remember that during the eruption of the teeth, the child’s body temperature should not exceed 37.8 degrees Celsius and most often it should remain only on the day on which the tooth appeared. Additionally, it should be borne in mind that in infants, fever is often the only symptom of an infection, for example of the urinary tract .
When should a teething fever be a concern?
- When it lasts for several days.
- The fever is very high.
- When the fever is accompanied by other ailments.
In order to be able to conclude that elevated body temperature, both low-grade fever and fever are associated with teething, an infectious cause should be ruled out.
Teething fever – how to relieve ailments?
In order to alleviate the discomfort of teething in a child, it is worth using proven methods. It will help:
- a hard and cool teether that reduces itching of the gums,
- lotions and gels to alleviate the symptoms of teething and to lubricate the gums
- chamomile used for washing (with gauze wrapped around a finger, dipped in chamomile infusion).