Skip to Content

Should You be Concerned When Your Baby Teeth Coming in Late?

With excessive drooling, sensitive gums, and inconsolable crying there is no doubt that teething is a difficult time for parents.

When everyone at the park is swapping teething stories it can be distressing when you are up at night worried about your baby not teething.

If you are concerned about your child’s baby teeth coming in late read on to discover what to expect, what you can do, and when to visit a doctor.

When do children normally start teething?

Every child is a unique and beautiful creation.

They sit up, crawl, walk, and talk when they are ready.

Teeth are no exception to this rule.

Babies will normally begin teething at their own pace.

Generally, you can expect your baby’s pearly whites to start poking through between 6-8 to 12 months of age.

Baby teething chart

Though some parents may be graced with the characteristic teething drool and tears slightly sooner or later than what is standard.

Some babies have started cutting teeth as early as three months old and, though it is rare, there have even been babies who were born with a tooth cutting through already!

Other babies haven’t had the smallest hint of a tooth until eleven months of age and then cut four to five teeth within a single month.

By kindergarten, there is no identifiable difference between the above-mentioned children’s smiles, just the same as no one could tell simply by looking which child had sat up, crawled, or walked first.

Though it certainly can make feeding your child a challenge when they still require pureed food at ten months old, it may not be classified as late teething just yet.

At what age is it classified as late teething?

Generally, the majority of babies have cut their first tooth by their first birthday.

If your child’s first birthday has come and gone, it is safe to assume that you have a late teether on your hands.

Since it is recommended to schedule your child’s first dental exam at 12 months of age, ensure that you do this.

At this visit, you will have the opportunity to address any concerns you may have with your child’s dentist.

The dentist will then examine your child for any cause for concern in your child’s teeth development and continue to monitor their healthy tooth eruption in the future.

With a clean bill of health, this visit can help to give you some peace of mind knowing that your late teether is going to be a-okay.

If there is any cause for concern in your child’s baby teeth coming in late your dentist will recommend follow-up care to address any issues that may be at fault.

What could cause late teething in babies?

If your child has not cut any teeth by the time they are 13 months old they are experiencing late teething.

The majority of the time, baby teeth coming in late is nothing to be concerned about.

Often times it can be difficult to point to a direct cause of late teething.

After your dentist has ruled out any serious factors, there could be a number of things which are delaying your child’s teeth from poking through including:

Genetic Predisposition

He has his mothers chin, his fathers eyes, and quite possibly one or both of his parents teething timeline.

The age that babies start teething has been linked to hereditary factors such as when one or both parents began teething themselves.

If you are concerned that hereditary factors may be the cause of your child’s baby teeth coming in late, compare the time your own teeth came in.

If you don’t remember, ask your parents and in-laws about you and your spouse’s teething days.

Poor Nutrition

Poor nutrition can show up in the body in a number of ways, including when babies will begin teething.

With a pureed diet, common breastfeeding issues, or low formula supplementation it can be easy for baby to be missing out on key nutrients needed to promote healthy teeth growth.

Babies that are experiencing late teething due to poor nutrition are typically weaker, smaller, and underweight when compared to their peers.


Another potential cause of delayed teething is hypothyroidism.

Hypothyroidism occurs when the baby has an under-active thyroid gland which does not produce the number of hormones that the body needs.

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism in babies include headaches, weakness, fatigue, and stiff joints.

Additional to late teething, hyperthyroidism can also be the cause of delayed walking or talking and a child being overweight.

What can I do to help my baby’s teeth breakthrough?

Baby chewing on teething ring toy

Throughout our babies childhood, we will undoubtedly encourage them to do many things.

We hold their hands as they wobble along on unbalanced feet in hopes that they will take off walking.

We coo and babble along with them waiting eagerly for those first words to escape their lips.

Encouraging teething is just one of the many things we can add to the list.

You can help to encourage your baby’s teeth to break through with some of the following tips and tricks:

  • Try a teething ring that will help to massage the gums.
  • Let baby chew on a hard teething toy that will add pressure to the gums as well as massage them.
  • Massage baby’s gums daily with an infant toothbrush.
  • Freeze food in a mesh feeder for baby to gnaw on.
  • Offer baby organic teething biscuits, always under supervision as the biscuits can break into smaller pieces creating a choking hazard.
  • Toss some wearable teething gloves onto baby’s hands.

When to Visit The Doctor if Your Baby Teeth Coming in Late

If at any time in your baby’s development they are showing signs of poor nutrition or hyperthyroidism you should schedule an appointment for baby to be examined by your pediatrician.

If your 13-month-old has no concerning symptoms and is still sporting a toothless grin, and you have confirmed that late teething is not caused by hereditary factors, it is recommended to take your baby to the doctor.

Your pediatrician will be able to determine if poor nutrition or hyperthyroidism is a potential cause in the delay of your baby’s teething, despite the lack of visible symptoms.

They can also refer you to a pediatric dentist if your child is still gumming his food at 18 months old.

Work together with your dentist and your pediatrician to determine the best route of treatment for your baby.

Additional information:

Photo credits:

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.