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Can Teething Cause a Runny Nose? | Understanding the Link

Can Teething Cause a Runny Nose

Teething is a normal part of growing up for babies, where their first tiny teeth come in. But it can be a tough time for both babies and parents. Sometimes, along with new teeth, babies might have issues like a fever or discomfort. But here’s the big question: Can teething cause a runny nose as well?

Teething brings changes, like more drooling, chewing, and fussiness. But a runny nose isn’t directly related to teething. It might happen because teething keeps the baby’s immune system busy, weakening the nose response. The extra drool from teething can also sometimes irritate the skin around the nose.

So, while teething and a runny nose might happen together, one doesn’t cause the other. Teething brings its own changes, but a runny nose doesn’t directly result from those new teeth. 

Let’s find out the answer to the question, “Can teething cause a runny nose?”

When Does the Teething Process Start in Babies?

Teething Process Start in Babies

Babies usually get their first tooth at about six months old. By the time they’re 30 months old, they generally have a full set of 20 teeth. Each tooth’s teething period usually lasts for eight days. It starts four days before the tooth pops through the gum and continues for three days afterward. This whole process is called tooth eruption.

Sometimes, parents and caregivers see things like a runny nose or a fever before a new tooth appears. However, some experts think these symptoms might not be directly linked to teething.

What are the Basic Symptoms of Teething?

  • Drooling: Your baby might produce more saliva than usual, leading to drooling.
  • Face Rash: Sometimes, drool can have tiny bits of food in it that might irritate the skin on the face, causing a rash.
  • Chewing Urges: Your baby might want to chew on things more than usual.
  • Fussiness: Your baby might be more irritable or fussy during teething.
  • Gum Pain: Some babies might feel a bit of pain in their gums because germs from the mouth can enter the new openings in the gums. However, not all babies experience this gum pain.

What are the Causes of Runny Nose in Children?

Causes of Runny Nose in Children

The nose makes mucus, which keeps it wet inside and catches germs before they go in deeper. Usually, the body pushes mucus back into the throat, and we swallow it. When too much mucus runs through the nose instead of going down the throat, it’s called a runny nose or rhinorrhea.

Mucus can be thick or thin and can be see-through or not. Usually, a runny nose goes away by itself.

In children, some common causes of runny nose are

  • Cold Weather: Sometimes, the body makes more mucus when cold.
  • Crying: Tears can go through the nose and make it run.
  • Irritation: Being around things that bother the nose, like smoke or pollution, can make it runny.
  • Colds and Flu: These are sicknesses caused by viruses that can fill the nose with mucus, making it run.
  • Obstruction: Something foreign, like a small object, can get stuck in the nose and cause a runny nose.
  • Sinus Infection: In adults, the spaces in the face (sinuses) can get filled with infected mucus during sickness, making the nose run. This is rare in babies because their sinuses are not fully grown.
  • Adenoid Infection: The adenoids are tissues at the back of the nose, and if they get infected, it can make the nose run.

Less common causes of a runny nose include

  • Choanal Atresia: This is when something closes off the back of the nose. Doctors usually find it soon after birth, but it might not be noticed for a while if it’s only on one side.
  • Pyriform Aperture Stenosis: This is when the bony opening of the nose is too narrow, blocking it.
  • Deviated Nasal Septum: The wall inside the nose can lean to one side, blocking it. This can happen from birth or after a nose injury.
  • Nasal Polyps: These are growths in the nose lining that can make the nose run. They look like grapes.
  • Nasal Cysts or Tumors: These are rare but can block the nose. Sometimes, they can be cancerous and usually grow on one side of the nose.

So, Can Teething Cause a Runny Nose?

Can Teething Cause a Runny Nose

The opinion of experts on “Can teething cause a runny nose?” is when babies are teething, it doesn’t directly cause a runny nose, fever, diarrhea, or diaper rash. But some experts think there might be a connection. They believe that the stress of teething on the immune system of babies could make them more likely to get infections, leading to symptoms like a runny nose.

Babies get their teeth between 6 and 30 months old, and their immune system changes. This means the protection they got from being born and potentially from breastfeeding starts to lower.

At the same time, babies start to explore more of the world around them so that they might come into contact with more childhood illnesses. Babies also like to chew on things when teething, which might expose them to germs and wreak further havoc on their immune systems. 


Numerous individuals link a runny nose and other indicators to teething. Yet, no conclusive evidence supports the idea that can teething cause a runny nose, fever, diarrhea, vomiting, or excessive crying. These manifestations likely result from exposure to common childhood illnesses as infants begin to explore the world around them.

Should your baby exhibit significant distress, run a fever, or experience severe or persistent symptoms, seeking guidance from a healthcare professional is advisable. Whenever concerns arise about an infant’s symptoms, reaching out to a medical expert is always the prudent course of action. Call 9529352121 to contact the dental experts at Hopkins Family Dentistry for your child’s dental care.


Why do babies get runny noses when teething?

Certain professionals posit the existence of an indirect connection between the two phenomena, suggesting that the stress associated with teething might render infants more susceptible to infections. These infections could manifest symptoms like a runny nose. It’s worth noting that the teething process occurs between 6 and 30 months, coinciding with notable changes in the immune system.

How long do babies show signs of teething?

The duration of your baby’s teething symptoms may vary, but as a general guideline, you can anticipate the teething process to span around a week. This includes a period of a few days leading up to the tooth breaking through the gums and a few days following its emergence.

Do babies cry hysterically when teething?

Initially, a comforting cuddle may soothe your baby if the teething pain is mild, but they are likely to remain unsettled, waking on and off throughout the night. In cases of more intense pain, they might become almost hysterical, crying even when provided comfort. This is the opportune moment to explore the teething remedies of your choice.

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