While the medical community defines teething (or odontiasis) as, “the process by which an infant's teeth erupt, or breakthrough, the gums,” most parents are more concerned with how it affects our little ones on a day to day basis. While we can’t fully predict how babies will react to getting their first tooth, we can learn about baby teething symptoms, how to soothe a teething baby, and all about the teething process itself. Overall, the more that we know about teething, the better we can help our little ones get through it.
Teething Time Frame
One of the most common questions parents ask is, “How long does teething last for babies?” To answer this, it is helpful to know both the time frame and timeline in which teething occurs. In general, teething is an ongoing process that occurs between 6 and 24 months of age. While your little one has twenty teeth that will begin to appear over a period of two years, teething fortunately only causes pain and irritation around the time that your baby’s tooth is about to break through the gum. There is no exact amount of time that has been identified for how long it takes for a tooth to cut through, but most professionals have estimated that it can emerge anytime between 1-7 days per tooth. However, teething symptoms typically only last a few days, so if baby is experiencing discomfort for an extended period of time, it is safe to assume it is not from teething.
Most babies begin to teethe between 4 and 7 months of age, but this can take place earlier or later. As a general guide, your little one’s teeth will most likely emerge within the following timeline windows:
4 to 7 months
During this time, the teething process begins. The first teeth to erupt are typically the lower central incisors, which are the two middle teeth on the bottom. Children are also becoming more mobile. They usually begin to grasp and pull objects toward their body, sit without support, transfer items from one hand to the other, and may even begin to crawl. It is important to keep an eye on the small objects within your baby’s reach, as they will want to put everything in their mouths during teething!
8 to 16 months
Between 8 and 12 months, your baby’s upper central incisors, or the upper middle teeth, will appear. Additionally, sometime between 9 and 16 months, their top and bottom teeth right next to the middle teeth will emerge (these are called the lower and upper lateral incisors). In addition to teething, it is important to recognize that other significant milestones of gross motor skills are reached during this developmental window. Most babies are able to pull themselves to a seated position, stand without assistance, take their first steps, pick up and throw objects, roll a ball, and grasp objects between their thumb and one finger.
13 to 23 months
Typically, between 13 and 19 months of age, your little one’s first molars will appear at the bottom and the top around the same time. Shortly after, their canine teeth (the sharp, pointed ones) will most likely emerge on both the top and bottom rows, sometime between 16 and 23 months.
23 to 31 months
During the final stage of teething, a toddler’s very back teeth, or second molars, appear on the bottom row. While most teething symptoms present themselves similarly among both toddlers and babies, there are some differences as your child grows older. Primarily, your toddler may now be able to tell you about their discomfort and pain, unlike nonverbal infants. On the other hand, many toddlers won’t demonstrate any signs of discomfort and won’t complain of pain at all when their molars come in. For other little ones, the pain may be substantially worse because their first molars are bigger compared to their other teeth. They may even complain of headaches or jaw pain!
Toys That Can Help
Teething toys can offer immense relief for baby teething symptoms, while simultaneously keeping them occupied with playtime. Because teething babies are always on the lookout for something they can chew, teething toys are specifically designed to soothe baby’s gums and offer temporary teething relief.
Our Spinning Rattle Teether™ is just as functional as it is cute! This rattle’s textured pedals are perfect for teething and fun for your baby to play with. Your baby can also easily hold this rattle and teether, making this toy a great choice for on-the-go teething relief.
Another great teething toy option is anything from our Squeeze & Teethe collection. With an array of different animal pals to choose from, these natural rubber teethers will quickly become your little one’s best friend. Your baby will love how bendable and soft they are, and the cute sound they make when squeezed.
There really is no way to gauge exactly how long teething lasts, but fortunately, no matter the age or stage of teething your child is in, there are multiple ways that you can help soothe them and bring relief. One of the best ways that you can help your baby or toddler is by providing a variety of fun and engaging teething toys for babies!