Cavities, infections, cracked or chipped teeth, exposed roots or gum troubles can lead to a toothache, from mild to unbearable. A cavity doesn’t hurt until it has reached the pulp of the tooth, where nerve endings exist. That is when it becomes really painful and the intensity will only increase from there.
Before you get to see your dentist, you can try a selection of toothache home remedies that are known to work. These can get you through the days before a dentist visit, but will not solve the problem. Tooth decay is a serious matter and should be addressed professionally. Numbing the pain doesn’t prevent the issue from becoming an advanced one.
How strong is your toothache? For how long can you bear it until you set an appointment? Are there any other symptoms like puss, fever or swelling? In a case like this you have to check with an emergency service to get quick help, unless you already know the cause of the problem. Does the pain set off when you eat or drink something hot/cold? It could be the temperature of what you are eating that is triggering the pain. We are going to explore the various remedies available that can provide you with toothache pain relief no matter its cause.
Please note than any of the remedies to be presented, be they from the drugstore or from nature, are only for symptomatic treatment. While remedies of the anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory range may actually get rid of small issues, severe problems won’t be made better because these require proper care only a professional can provide. They’re only meant to help you manage your daily activities until you see a dentist.
Over-the-counter toothache medicine can help you almost instantly, since it’s made to handle these kinds of issues. The downside is that you may be tempted to increase or to repeat the dose too frequently. Your liver may not be able to process all those medications, not to mention that your stomach might get upset, too. In any case, pills you can obtain from the pharmacy are quick to act and will have a lasting effect.
You may try using numbing agents like viscous lidocaine, as well as the regular painkillers available. Common pain medication is what works best and is most available to treat your dental pain. Ibuprofen and aspirin are used most often for their anti-inflammatory effects.
Peroxide rinses are helpful, as these clean the mouth and reach those places in between the teeth, as well as inside the cavities. They will eliminate anything that’s contaminating and will also stop the spreading of bacteria. Hydrogen peroxide as mouthwash is an ideal choice. You shouldn’t see this as an infection stopper though. Only use peroxide from 5 to 10 minutes on the tooth. It’s a strong agent and will work with the more severe types of pain. It can be diluted a bit in case you don’t like the taste.
The mouth wash is important too and you actually have to use it when dealing with this. It should contain methyl salicylate to be really effective, as noticed by consumers. Don’t forget to brush and floss your teeth as you usually do.
Cough drops with benzocain or other anesthetics will help a lot. There are also gels containing this anesthetic substance. The milder versions will offer relief when the issue is minor.
A Word on Alcohol
Alcohol can have a numbing effect on tissues and nerves. Although it may seem counter-productive to many, alcohol can actually be of great help when dealing with such pain. We’re not talking about drinking it but about applying it locally. After all, many mouth washes have alcohol in it so it’s safe and won’t do harm in a situation like this. Moreover, it can definitely kill the bacteria that’s troubling you. You may use brandy, whiskey, vodka or anything as strong. Don’t overdo it because it’s drying out your mouth and it’s also corrosive.
Natural Toothache Home Remedies
Some people prefer natural toothache home remedies that can be found at home because these act locally and don’t harm the stomach lining or trouble the system like pills would.
You can have a look at the antiseptic food in your kitchen and spice rack – there can be plenty of these.
- Onion could be the first to try. It kills the germs found in cavities but it works only in the early stages. This is a good remedy when you feel the first signs of damage and discomfort. Use a small piece of raw onion on the tooth.
- Make an anti-bacterial paste of salt and pepper. While this may sound a bit hard to bear, it can certainly help because these ingredients are not only anti-inflammatory, but also anti-bacterial and analgesic, meaning they clear the existing bacteria and desensitize the tooth. You don’t have to burn your mouth with these – just apply a bit of paste on the tooth that’s bothering you. Let this sit for a few minutes and make sure to repeat the procedure daily until you obtain relief.
- Garlic is known for the some properties and is actually quite potent. Crush it well and mix it with salt, then apply on the painful tooth. Eating it raw is also helpful.
- Cloves are perhaps the best known natural remedy for toothache. Ever noticed how similar their smell and taste is (when you chew these well) to that common substance dentists used in their offices? It’s the eugenol and it’s found in great quantities in cloves. This is anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial and it can also numb the nerves. You will feel this at first on your tongue and mouth lining as you start chewing cloves. In fact, many of the toothache drops available in pharmacies contain clove oil. Grind a few, mix the powder with some vegetable oil and then fab on tooth. You may also replace this with clove oil but be careful – a tiny amount goes a long way, since it’s in such a concentrated form. Using a tiny bit of cotton makes sure that the oil acts on the region you want it to and doesn’t wash away.
- Oregano oil – you can read all sorts of amazing details about it online. In this situation, it’s best used when you dilute it by mixing it with another kind of oil, then apply it to the problem area.
- Apple cider vinegar or even plain household vinegar can be used on a cotton ball and held in place to help ease the pain.
- Tea tree oil has all the properties you need in a situation like this. It’s an important bacteria killer but watch out, it is also in high concentrations. This is why it’s necessary to dilute it in warm water. If not, you may use it as it is, but never apply more than 2 drops. It’s got a very strong flavor, too.
- Peppermint has some stunning properties and its effects can be felt right as you sip on a peppermint infusion. For teeth, it is calming and disinfecting. To get some relief, use the leaves and place them where needed. You may have both fresh or dried leaves, chewed or left on the spot.
- Myrrh extract tincture or similar concoctions using myrrh can provide some quick and welcome relief.
- Dealing with a swollen face too, because of your toothache? You may benefit by applying a tea bag while it’s still hot, because it’s got tannic acid. These substances act against the swelling.
- Vanilla, Almond or Peppermint Extract work well, too. All you need is a bit of cotton to apply it and keep it in place.
- Even potatoes are able to provide some relief. Get a raw one, peel it and cut a slice or a chunk that you can feet inside your cheek. It must be freshly cut, so that it’s got enough of the juice.
- Cayenne pepper with water is yet another mixture one should try. Make a paste that’s not too fluid and which can be spread onto the effected to
Hot or Cold?
Unfortunately, you will have to figure this one out yourself. It depends on several, factors and it’s not always obvious. When you apply things to a sore tooth, you can go for either hot or cold. It depends on your teeth sensitivity, too. If cold feels like it’s increasing the pain, avoid it. When you use foods from your kitchen that have been stored in the refrigerator, it’s recommended that you let them cool to room temperature first. Usually, warmth can heal common mouth related problems as well as soothing the nerves. Still, there are situations in which you may find an ice pack to be more calming, such as when your cheeks get swollen.
More Procedures That Help Relieve Toothache
Before taking any other measures, you must do this: floss, rinse and brush. In so many cases it’s food scraps that’s stuck in a cavity or crack that is causing the pain. This is because it’s rotting over there and the bacteria are thriving. Stuck food is a very common occurrence and you must rule that out before you do anything else. However, be careful and don’t brush hard. In many cases this has led to enamel thinning, which is terrible for teeth. It will only make them more prone to cavities.
Just like when you have throat issues, you could also try rinsing your mouth with salt water. Make a solution using one or two teaspoons of salt in a small glass of water. Make sure the water is warm and that you spit it all out every time.
An ice pack may help if placed on the jaw, but heat can also be equally useful. It varies from situation to situation and you will have to discover what gives you relief. If you already know your teeth to be temperature sensitive, then you may want to avoid anything that triggers more upset.
Also, note that dental problems tend to worsen at nighttime, because of the blood that rushes to the head when you’re lying down. If your pain gets worse at night, then sleep on an elevated pillow and don’t forget to create warmth around yourself, preferably by using a hot compress.
Getting Rid of Toothache for Good
There are high chances to obtain temporary dental pain relief. However, you cannot expect to get rid of the problem for good, especially if the pain has been lasting and feeling very disruptive. Toothaches that become severe and last longer than 2 days require immediate medical intervention. If there is an infection and you leave it untreated, it can spread to other parts, including the bones. The infection will simply gnaw at the bone and will eventually spread to your blood. Be prepared to answer the dentist’s questions concerning what makes the pain feel better or worse or what and when started it. Don’t be surprised if the doctor is using laser and/or antibiotics to treat the problem. Depending on how advanced the problem is, the treatment can be a bit harsh too, and it will get you the much-craved toothache relief.
Can Homeopathy Help?
Homeopathy is a very different form of treatment and it actually relies on millenarian-old principles discovered by ancient healers. It was perfected in the 19th century as a form of healing and its remedies were tested or “proven”. If you have the possibility, you may turn to a homeopath for quick toothache relief. Remedies like Hypericum, Coffea or Belladonna can even calm down intense shooting pain. Also Arnica and Hepar Sulphur are recommended. However, prescribing homeopathic medicine is the job of a professional and requires extensive consultations.
How to Deal with the Swelling
If your face or jaw is swollen because of a tooth, you can take some measures right away. Ibuprofen or any similar anti-inflammatory can help on the spot. Also, you may use something that contains tannins to apply on the troubled tooth, like a bag of green or black tea.
You may still try all the toothache home remedies described here but make sure to apply them on as much of the affected area as you can, for example on the gums around the painful tooth. Don’t postpone your dentist visit – it’s compulsory when swelling occurs and the matters may only get worse.
What You Can Do Further for Your Teeth
It would be best to have a goal that’s about more than just making the pain go away. If you get relief from pain, it could only be temporary. The issue will come back quickly to bother you unless you do something more for your teeth. It has been shown that the best you can do is to improve your diet. There is outstanding evidence from the past especially – people with a natural and balanced diet have healthy strong teeth naturally. Also, they avoid gum disease. The secret lies in the acid and alkaline foods balance. It is also about the mineral content in what you consume. When acidic foods are being processed by the body, it needs to use its stored minerals. These resources are eventually depleted. When that happens, the body then extracts the needed minerals from teeth and bones, leading to severe conditions. Alkaline foods, on the other hand, don’t deplete the body, but actually add important resources. Take this example: it’s not the sugar in itself that causes tooth decay; it’s the acidity of sugar and what it does inside the body.
Hygiene will probably even matter more from now on. Just make sure to avoid the evils of intensive teeth hygiene, such as too intense brushing or too much mouthwash. Now that you found out how to relieve a toothache, you may start working on that. At the same time, pick the phone and contact a dentist to see how soon you can benefit of their service.