NOTE: If this is a medical emergency, call 911. This article is not intended to substitute for medical advice.
Kids and young adults have a teeth growing schedule that is summarized in this short article to help parents and caregivers understand the joys and tribulations of our teeth growing in. This article also helps ease our comfort as we take care of our children while they are going through it. This last week has been an utter mess of motherhood as diarrhea, temperatures, all nighters, and COVID scares ran through our home like a bat out of hell.
The worst part of motherhood is hearing your kid in pain. As caregivers, we have to wear many hats. Wearing the nurse and doctor hats is not our thing. Our children need comfort and help while they heal and recover from whatever they pick up in their schools, parks and beyond. The absolute worst is when your kids have a fever. Not only are the kids mostly inconsolable, they are in pain. The only thing we can do as parents it to do our best on easing the symptoms.
I was always reluctant to call the pediatrician for silly worries like a cold, but that is exactly what they are there for, advice and healing solutions. I recommend calling your nurse practitioner or your lactation nurse if you are having issues that don’t seem to be solving themselves. I didn’t enjoy working with their pediatrician because I felt like I needed to know it all. But the real deal is that I don’t know it all and the pediatrician along with the extra nurse and staff are usually happy to help with anything a parent needs.
If your pediatrician does not have the answer, typically they would recommend contacting other types of doctors that can help, i.e. an Ear, Nose, and Throat doctor (also know as ENT’s), a Licensed Lactation Expert, etc. As the saying goes, everyone has an opinion HOWEVER sometimes parents intuition CAN be wrong and hurtful. Our goal is to get our children as well as possible through healthy feeding habits and holistic, healthy healing. This is why leaning on the medical community for help can really save you time and money in the long term.
Our main solutions to colds and sicknesses would be warm baths. After drying them we would put them in non-tight, light cotton clothes. The lighter the clothes the better, but you also need to be sure they are not too cold at night. My pediatrician recommended that if we have one layer of clothing on, then a newborn baby usually needs twice more clothing than what the parents would be wearing. We enjoyed buying sustainable clothes that are breathable to the skin. We comfort our babies and toddlers with their rocking chair. If directed by the doctor, we use Children’s Liquid Tylenol or acetaminophen generic brand to save some money. We would wipe the bottom of their feet and their palms with a cool water ringed out compress. If the temperature was high, we would wet a washcloth and ring all of the excess water. We would put it on their forehead, their stomach and back which would comfort them and help lower the temperature.
I’ve noticed that sometimes my child’s fever is not from a virus, it’s his teeth coming in. I also have noticed that when a tooth (especially a molar) is breaking through the gums, a fever is likely to ensue.
FLASHBACK TO 1981. I specifically remember knocking out my own front tooth while pushing a tire swing. I looked the other way and it hit me right smack in the mouth. What goes up, must come down.
On that tooth fallout flashback, here are the ages and stages of tooth and molar growth for children.
6 – 12 MONTHS. It’s first tooth time! The first two lower bottom teeth are about to sprout up from the gums, followed by the two front teeth. There were a few nights where my babies were crying inconsolably. I called my pediatrician out of sheer concern, and she noted it was the baby teeth popping in. I was so relieved. The fancy, technical name for the first two lower teeth is called the lower central incisors and the upper are called upper central incisors.
9 to 16 MONTHS.
The upper and lower counterparts to the front teeth on the top and bottom begin to emerge right next to the two front teeth. They are called the lateral upper and lower incisors.
13 to 19 MONTHS.
The dreadful MOLARS erupt through the gums like a volcano. We used Tylenol and Ice Chews to lessen the pain as the two first upper and lower molars pop out of their gums.
16 to 23 MONTHS.
The painful teeth emergence stays strong while the two upper and lower canine teeth pop in like a wolf. The canine emerge which helps the children chew as they eat more solid foods than liquid foods.
23 to 31 MONTHS OLD.
First is the worst and second is the best does not ring true when it comes to molars. As the four upper and lower molars peek through the gums of your child, anything is possible. Mainly there is a lot of uncontrollable screaming that is not lessened with Tylenol alone. This is where prayer and comfort come in. Parents need to take time for themselves and it is important to share responsibilities of the children or you could build a resentment list that will never go away. without counseling..but in this case now is not the time for this.
6 – 13 YEARS OLD.
All of the incisors, molars, bicuspid and canine teeth break through prior to their teenage years. Soak in all of their young little problems like not wanting to eat vegetables now, as it is about to get a little murky in the unpredictable teenage years. As THE WHO would call it, it’s a TEENAGE WASTELAND.
17-21 YEARS OLD.
The last of the molars also known as the wisdom teeth poke on through. When this happened to me, I had a major headache and thought I had had an ear infection. It just turned out to be my wisdom teeth trying to poke out of my soft, pink gums. Even though we are young adults in this stage, it is painful as all heck.
What dental stage is your child in now? Did you end up getting braces? I just upgraded to wearing an Invisalign mouth piece that is moving my teeth into a better place of alignment (like they should have been all along). Have you tried those as well? Would love to hear your teeth stories, let me know where you relate in the comments below.
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