Do Babies Cry When Teething? Understanding Symptoms and Relief Strategies

As a parent, few things tug at my heartstrings more than my baby’s cries, especially when I can’t immediately figure out the cause. One common culprit that often leaves parents puzzled is teething. It’s a natural part of growing up, but it can be a challenging phase for both babies and parents.

Teething can cause discomfort, leading to increased fussiness and crying. But how do you know if those tears are really due to teething? Understanding the signs and symptoms can help you provide the right comfort and care for your little one during this tough time. Let’s dive into what you need to know about teething and its impact on your baby’s mood.

Key Takeaways

  • Teething Signs and Symptoms: Teething often causes increased drooling, skin irritation, biting, chewing, swollen gums, irritability, and occasionally mild fever and diarrhea.
  • Crying and Teething: Babies cry more intensely during teething due to gum pain, often disrupting sleep patterns for both the baby and parents.
  • Safe Remedies for Teething: Safe ways to alleviate teething pain include using refrigerated teething rings, massaging gums, and providing cold washcloths for chewing. Consult a pediatrician before using over-the-counter pain relievers.
  • When to Consult a Pediatrician: Seek medical advice if the baby has severe symptoms like high fever, continuous crying, difficulty feeding, prolonged diarrhea, or signs of infection.

Understanding Teething in Babies

Signs and Symptoms of Teething

Teething brings a set of recognizable signs and symptoms. Babies often exhibit increased drooling, which can lead to skin irritation around the mouth. They may become more prone to biting and chewing on objects as a way to relieve gum discomfort. Swollen and sensitive gums are common, and you might notice that your baby is more irritable than usual.

Diarrhea and mild fever sometimes occur, though there’s ongoing debate about these being directly linked to teething. Red and sore cheeks are also reported. Monitoring your baby closely helps identify these symptoms and allows you to provide the necessary care.

The Role of Crying in Teething

Crying serves as a primary way for babies to communicate discomfort and other needs during teething. The pressure of emerging teeth causes significant gum pain, leading to bouts of crying that are often more intense than usual. This crying can disrupt sleep patterns for both the baby and parents.

Some relief strategies include gently massaging the baby’s gums with a clean finger, offering a chilled (not frozen) teething ring, or providing appropriate pain relief if recommended by a pediatrician. Recognizing that crying is a natural response helps manage the emotional and physical toll teething takes on families.

Managing Teething Discomfort

Safe Remedies for Teething Pain

Parents can try various safe remedies to ease their baby’s teething pain. Teething rings can soothe a baby’s gums, especially if refrigerated. Massaging the baby’s gums with a clean finger also provides relief. Using a damp, cold washcloth for the baby to chew on can be helpful, as well. Over-the-counter pain relievers, like acetaminophen or ibuprofen, can be effective, but only after consulting a pediatrician. Avoid giving babies teething tablets or gels with benzocaine due to FDA warnings about potential health risks.

When to Consult a Pediatrician

Knowing when to consult a pediatrician is crucial for managing teething discomfort. If a baby experiences severe symptoms like high fever, continuous crying, or difficulty feeding, it’s important to seek medical advice. Prolonged teething symptoms beyond fever, like diarrhea or discomfort lasting more than a week, also warrant a doctor’s visit. Persistent bleeding in the gums or signs of infection should prompt immediate consultation. Always discuss with a pediatrician before administering any medication to ensure it’s safe and appropriate.


Teething can be a challenging phase for both babies and parents. Understanding the signs and knowing effective relief strategies can make a significant difference. While teething rings and gum massages offer comfort, it’s crucial to avoid certain products and consult a pediatrician before using any medication. Always be vigilant for severe symptoms and seek medical advice when necessary. With the right approach, you can help your baby navigate through teething with minimal discomfort.

Babies often cry during teething due to the discomfort and pain associated with emerging teeth, which can cause swollen gums and irritability. Offering teething toys or gently massaging the gums can provide relief and soothe your baby, similar to the recommendations by Mayo Clinic. Additionally, ensuring your baby has a clean, safe object to chew on can help alleviate teething symptoms, much like the tips provided by What to Expect.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are common signs of teething in babies?

Common signs of teething include drooling, swollen gums, and increased irritability. Babies may also chew on objects and have disrupted sleep.

How can I soothe my baby’s teething pain?

You can soothe your baby’s teething pain by gently massaging their gums, offering a teething ring, or using a cold washcloth. These methods provide comfort and relief.

Are teething rings safe for my baby?

Yes, teething rings are generally safe when used properly. Make sure to choose rings made from non-toxic materials and avoid those filled with liquid.

Should I consult a pediatrician before giving pain relievers for teething?

Yes, always consult a pediatrician before giving your baby over-the-counter pain relievers to ensure they are safe and appropriate for your child’s specific needs.

When should I seek medical advice for my baby’s teething?

Seek medical advice if your baby has a high fever, severe discomfort, or symptoms that persist beyond normal teething signs. It’s crucial to rule out other potential issues.

Are there any teething products I should avoid?

Avoid teething gels with benzocaine and teething necklaces, as they can pose health risks. Stick to safe and pediatrician-recommended teething remedies.