signs of teething in breastfed babies

Teething is a significant developmental milestone for infants, and for breastfeeding mothers, it can present unique challenges. Recognizing the signs of teething in breastfed babies is essential for understanding their discomfort and providing appropriate relief. In this article, we will delve into the common symptoms of teething in breastfed infants and offer practical strategies to alleviate their distress.

signs of teething in breastfed babies

Signs of Teething in Breastfed Babies:

While all babies experience teething differently, there are some common signs to watch out for in breastfed babies:

  • Increased fussiness and irritability: This is one of the most common signs of teething. Babies may be more fussy than usual, especially during feedings.
  • Changes in sleep patterns: Teething can disrupt sleep, making babies wake up more frequently at night.
  • Drooling: Increased drooling is another common sign of teething. The extra saliva can help to soothe the gums.
  • Chewing on everything: Babies may chew on their hands, fingers, toys, or anything else they can get their hands on. This is a natural way to try to relieve the pain and discomfort in their gums.
  • Gum redness and swelling: You may notice that your baby’s gums are red and swollen around the areas where the teeth are erupting.
  • Loss of appetite: Some babies may eat less than usual when they are teething. This is because the pain in their gums can make it uncomfortable to suckle.
  • Fever: A mild fever (up to 100.4°F) can be a sign of teething. However, if your baby has a fever higher than 100.4°F, it’s important to see a doctor to rule out other possible causes

Soothing Strategies for Breastfed Babies:

  1. Chilled Teething Toys: Offering a clean, chilled teething toy for the baby to gnaw on can help alleviate gum discomfort and reduce drooling.

  2. Gentle Massage: Using a clean finger, gently massage the baby’s gums to provide soothing pressure and alleviate some of the discomfort caused by teething.

  3. Breastfeeding Comfort: Breastfeeding provides not only nutrition but also comfort for teething babies. However, some babies may prefer shorter, more frequent nursing sessions.

  4. Teething Rings: Specially designed teething rings, made from safe, non-toxic materials, can be offered to the baby for chewing and relief from teething discomfort.

  5. Natural Remedies: Some parents find that natural remedies, such as chamomile or clove oil (used sparingly and with caution), can provide relief for teething discomfort. It’s essential to consult with a pediatrician before using any alternative remedies.

What is Teething?

Teething is the process of teeth erupting through the gums. This typically begins around 6 months of age, although some babies may start earlier or later. As the teeth break through the gums, they can cause pain, discomfort, and inflammation.

How to Soothe a Teething Breastfed Baby

If you think your baby is teething, there are a few things you can do to help soothe them:

  • Breastfeed frequently: Breastfeeding can provide comfort and pain relief for your baby. The sucking action can help to massage the gums and release endorphins, which have natural pain-relieving properties.
  • Offer cold teething toys: Cold teething toys can help to numb the gums and provide relief from pain. Make sure the teething toys are safe for your baby to chew on and are free of BPA and other harmful chemicals.
  • Give your baby a teething ring or mesh feeder filled with frozen fruit: The cold temperature and the pressure of the fruit against the gums can help to provide relief.
  • Try a gentle gum massage: Gently massage your baby’s gums with a clean finger or a soft washcloth. This can help to ease the pain and inflammation.
  • Sing songs or read stories: Distraction can help to take your baby’s mind off the pain. Sing songs, read stories, or play games to keep them entertained.

When to See a Doctor

If your baby is having difficulty breastfeeding, has a fever higher than 100.4°F, or is showing other signs of illness, it’s important to see a doctor to rule out other possible causes.

Teething is a normal part of development, but it can be a challenging time for both babies and their parents. By recognizing the signs of teething and knowing how to soothe your baby, you can help make this process a little bit easier.


Teething is a natural part of an infant’s development, and understanding the signs of teething in breastfed babies is crucial for providing appropriate comfort and support. By recognizing the common symptoms of teething and implementing gentle, soothing strategies, parents can help ease their breastfed baby’s discomfort during this stage.

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