All parents have wondered this at one time: why do babies drool? If you’ve been noticing your little one suddenly has saliva flowing all day long, don’t fret – it’s a normal part of baby’s development!
As your baby’s saliva glands mature around a few months of age, it’s time to get out the bibs, and not just during mealtime. By the time an infant is about two months of age, non-stop drool can be a typical part of daily life. From wet blankets to soggy clothes, it can be a surprise when babies start drooling excessively!
1. Saliva production is vital for the digestive system.
When you see your baby drooling, know that excess saliva production is connected to his or her developing digestive system. Saliva is an important part of digestion, protecting your baby’s gut and also coating their clothes and toys with antibodies and proteins that can prevent disease.
Babies have six salivary glands responsible for producing saliva. These glands initiate saliva production, and too much saliva in the mouth causes babies to drool. Saliva glands produce up to 4 pints of saliva every day!
Adults have front teeth and muscle tone and control to keep saliva from falling from their mouths, but babies won’t have full control of their swallowing muscles until 18 to 24 months of age.
2. You’ll notice an increase in saliva production around 2-4 months old.
Salivary glands can produce 2 to 4 pints of saliva every day! While adults can simply swallow their saliva, babies don’t have full control of the facial muscles or the ability to swallow excess saliva until they are toddlers.
Although babies develop swallowing muscles in the womb, your babies lacks the muscle control to be able to swallow properly until around 6 months of age, when she is ready for solid food. Even as babies begin to eat solid food, they might have difficulty swallowing certain types of food or pieces of food that aren’t cut properly.
Parents might notice their little one increases saliva production around 2 to 3 months of age, and drooling lasts until early toddlerhood. As a baby enters the teething stage, drooling will probably increase.
Saliva bathes the teeth and gums, allowing the mouth to wash away excess food and bacteria.
3. Excessive drooling might be connected to teething.
Drooling might be a sign that teething is imminent, but this is not always the case. Drooling is very common for a baby between 2 and 3 months of age, and typically lasts until they are toddlers, but drooling doesn’t necessarily directly correlate to teething.
Researchers believe that drooling simply means that a baby’s salivary glands are developing as a baby approaches the age when starting solid foods becomes beneficial. Since breast milk and formula are easy to digest, saliva is not needed as much. As a baby begins to eat solid foods, the brain signals the need for increased saliva production.
When your baby chews on their hands, motor receptors in the mouth signal their brain to initiate the production of saliva, a good sign that they might be ready for solid food soon. Saliva helps neutralize stomach acid, grow a baby’s intestinal lining, and protect the lining of the esophagus from irritation.
Other symptoms of teething include chewing on the fingers and hands, excessive fussiness, red and swollen gums, and trouble sleeping.
4. Excessive saliva production means it’s time to invest in quality bibs.
When the saliva just won’t stop, you might notice a rash that breaks out around your baby’s mouth, your baby’s face, and your baby’s chin and neck. If your baby starts blowing bubbles, this extra moisture might also irritate delicate baby skin.
In some instances, a drooling baby can experience skin irritation around the mouth. This irritation can look like a rash or dry patch. If excessive drooling causes skin problems, try to wipe away drool so it doesn’t sit on your baby’s face for too long. You can also apply an ointment to the affected areas.
Bandana bibs are also a great way to prevent skin irritation from a drooling baby.
Investing in quality baby bibs can help stop the spread of rashes and other irritation. Ultra-soft bandana bibs are an excellent option to combat the effects of drooling. Bandana bibs are lightweight, absorbent, and soft on delicate baby skin – making them perfect for drooling!
KeaBabies Bandana Bibs are an excellent resource for parents of drooling babies!
KeaBabies Bandana Bibs come in sets of eight, and are available in a variety of colors and patterns, perfect for boys and girls! Until babies learn to swallow saliva, they’ll be drooling up a storm, and bandana bibs are soft and absorbent to help a baby protect their clothes, mouth, and skin.
KeaBabies Bandana Bibs feature dual-layer protection through organic cotton that enables fast liquid absorption, and water-resistant soft fleece fabric to make sure baby clothes stay dry and fresh.
5. Drool might irritate a baby’s skin.
Skin irritation can be caused by a baby drooling. Underdeveloped muscles cause a baby to drool excessively at times, and this sticky and slick substance can cause skin irritation. Parents can use a cloth to keep their baby’s face dry, use an ointment to create a protective barrier, and change their baby’s clothes often when they become too wet from a baby drooling.
Baby drool is a completely normal phenomenon, and parents usually don’t need to be concerned.
Although it can be surprising for parents to watch their child let globs of drool fall out of their mouths all day, drool is a normal part of a baby’s growth and development. Drool is helpful for many aspects of an infant’s health, and investing in some quality bandana bibs can be a great way to protect a baby’s sensitive skin!
Meet Our KeaMommy Contributor: Kaitlyn Torrez
I’m Kaitlyn Torrez, from the San Francisco Bay Area. I live with my husband and two children, Roman and Logan. I’m a former preschool teacher, currently enjoying being a stay at home mom. I love all things writing, coffee, and chocolate. In my free time, I enjoy reading, blogging, and working out.