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Thread: top teeth causing soreness

  1. #1

    Default top teeth causing soreness

    Hi everyone,

    My 7mo DS got his top two front teeth about 2 weeks ago. In the last day or so my nipples have started getting sore when nursing. I think he hasn't got his mouth wide enough maybe as it feels like these new teeth are rubbing against the nipple - certainly the side of the nipple where the top teeth are is red and a bit sore. When he feeds at night it is worse, almost as if he won't/can't open his mouth fully. We didn't have any real traumas about biting when the bottom 2 came through at 20 weeks (just a week or so of "no" when he bit experimentally). He has bitten properly a couple of times since these new ones came through but tbh pinching my boob when feeding is more of a problem/nuisance.

    Has anyone else had this problem? Will it self-correct (like many things)? I've tried moving him so his head/neck is more extended in case the position of the head is the problem but it doesn't seem to make any difference. I am keeping my finger ready to unlatch him when he stops feeding but he has started getting separation anxiety and seems to want to comfort suck more atm. (I wonder if he also has some more teeth on the move because he is dribbling and chewing again and that is also why he is comfort sucking).

    Any reassurance or help would be most gratefully recieved!
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: top teeth causing soreness

    When is the- well, I hesitate to call it biting, so maybe gnawing?- occurring? Is it taking place throughout the feeding, or mostly at the end? Most kids don't bite when actively nursing because it's a great way to stop the milk flow, and that isn't in their interest. But a lot of kids will gnaw on mom at the end of the feeding, when they are just playing around. Anyway, best way to get it to stop in that case is to unlatch the baby as soon as he bites and out him down- he should eventually get the message that chomping means the feeding ends, and therefore stop doing it.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: top teeth causing soreness

    this is assuming the teeth are just rubbing because of a bad latch, not that your lo is gnawing/biting:
    what position are you feeding in at night? we had this problem (still having it to some extent, with some new teeth now) with the top teeth, she was trying to get a good latch but I guess it was painful. it helped for me to try different holds. so lying down, we tried without my arm under her head, then with my arm under her head. Or sitting using a pillow, we tried cradle hold, or her lying on the pillow directly and me using my hand to make a better boob sandwich for her to latch onto. also we tried different seats. one recliner let me get some relief because i could lean back more and somehow that angle helped with the latch problem. it did resolve itself over time. i used lots of lansinoh, she used ibueprofen, it helped also to give her a frozen teether like 10-15 mins before feedings so she had more relief and could relax more during the day feedings to give the nips a break.

    I know its terrible at night sometimes to break their latch (they freak out and cry) but if its really bad for you sometimes you have to do it. one sloppy night latch has given me horrible pain the whole next day.
    Christine
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  4. #4

    Default Re: top teeth causing soreness

    I'm not sure this is the same thing you're talking about, but with both my babies I got sore spots on the areolas just out from the base of the nipple when their top teeth came in. First it was uncomfortable, then it hurt, then it turned into scabs, and then it went away. I nursed both of them perfectly comfortably for a long time after that. I don't know if they just needed to learn to adjust their latch, or if the the edges of the teeth smoothed down with use and became less sharp.

    The thing that helped the most while it was going on was just to try and vary nursing positions as much as possible so their teeth weren't always in the same spot.
    Karen
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: top teeth causing soreness

    The key is to find positions where the latch is better, and then to focus on nursing in those positions for a while. Latching on correctly "trains" your LO to latch correctly. Latching incorrectly does the opposite. If the gums are coming into contact with your nipple, your baby probably needs a bigger, deeper latch, with the chin up more. You might have more luck doing this in a lying down position than sitting up. I think many of us had to subtly (or not so subtly) retrain our baby's latch after teeth started coming in. I wouldn't say it will automatically go away on its own, but by choosing positions where your baby latches better, he will be more likely to latch "correctly" in all positions.


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  6. #6
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    Default Re: top teeth causing soreness

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*LLLKaren View Post
    I'm not sure this is the same thing you're talking about, but with both my babies I got sore spots on the areolas just out from the base of the nipple when their top teeth came in. First it was uncomfortable, then it hurt, then it turned into scabs, and then it went away. I nursed both of them perfectly comfortably for a long time after that. I don't know if they just needed to learn to adjust their latch, or if the the edges of the teeth smoothed down with use and became less sharp.

    The thing that helped the most while it was going on was just to try and vary nursing positions as much as possible so their teeth weren't always in the same spot.
    This is the same thing I did with my older babies. It also helped to remind them to ooppppeeennn wide.
    Susan
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  7. #7

    Default Re: top teeth causing soreness

    Thanks ladies for all your advice.

    It was happening all the way through the feed and definitely different from biting, or even gnawing. I have been experimenting with latches and find that lying down to nurse rather than in the chair in his room seems to have made a real difference at night. I have tried to wake him up a bit more as well but had a bit less success with that - it basically resulted in what is normally a sleepy 5am feed where he goes back to bed turning into a "hi mum! I'm awake! Lets have a chat and play!"

    Deepening the latch also seesm to have helped during the day and taking him off as soon as he goes from feeding to comfort sucking/chewing.

    Thanks all!!

    Clare xx

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