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What is baby teething fever?

Teething is the process where an infant’s teeth erupt through the gums. This can lead to various symptoms, such as mild fussiness and discomfort.

Fever may coincide with teething, but it likely indicates a separate health issue, such as an infection.

There are two main reasons why teething and infections occur at similar times:

Increased exposure to new pathogens: At 6–12 months of age, the infant is sucking and chewing various objects as they explore their world by putting things in their mouth. This exposes them to new pathogens.

Loss of antibodies: 

When infants are 6–12 months old, they begin to lose antibodies that their mother transfers to them during birth. This means their immune system has to respond to more infections, such as colds.

To summarize, fever may occur around the same time as teething. However, fever is a sign of infection, rather than a normal symptom of teething.

Fever definition:

In infants, the definition of fever depends partly on their age and the method used to take their temperature. Medical professionals define fever as below:

Infants younger than 3 months of age: Fever is a temperature of 100.4oF (38oC) and higher.

Older infants and children: Fever is a temperature of 101.2oF (38.4oC) and higher.

How to treat a fever:

A fever is a sign that the body is fighting an infection or disease. As such, it is not the fever itself that requires treatment, but the underlying issue.

However, Texas Children’s Hospital advises parents and caregivers to treat a fever that makes their child uncomfortable. They recommend the following remedies:

-Offering an age- and weight-appropriate dose of acetaminophen, which people can determine by first consulting a doctor.

-Dressing an infant lightly, to avoid trapping excess body heat

-Ensuring the infant drinks plenty of fluids.

When to see a doctor:

Call a doctor immediately if an infant is less than 3 months of age and has a fever of 100.4°F (30°C) or higher.

People should also call a doctor immediately if a child is older than 3 months of age and shows any of the following symptoms:

-Inconsolable crying.

-Difficulty awakening.

-Unexplained rash.

-Severe vomiting or diarrhea.

-Weakness or lethargy.


-A fever that repeatedly rises to 104°F (40°C) or higher.

Teething is not dangerous. It resolves on its own in around 8 days. Typically, infants with teething symptoms may experience some pain for the 5 days before their teeth erupt, and for another 3 days after they surface.

However, babies teethe many times during their first few years of life. As such, it can be helpful for parents and caregivers to develop a way to manage teething symptoms.

by Zawn Villines

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