No one likes having a toothache. The discomfort, swelling, and pain while eating or drinking can be enough to put anyone in a bad mood – and make them want to get to a dentist right away. But what do you do if you can’t get into your dentist’s office? Here are a few at-home remedies that can help you cope with toothache pain.
Rinse with Saltwater
Saltwater is a natural disinfectant, which makes it many people’s go-to for cleaning cuts and bruises. However, it can also be an effective treatment for toothaches! A simple saltwater rinse can disinfect your gums and remove particles in between your teeth, which can help reduce pain and inflammation.
To make a saltwater rinse, combine half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water. Then take a sip, swish it around your mouth, and spit into the sink. Repeat this process until you feel the pain begin to subside.
Peppermint Tea Compress
This treatment has a three-pronged approach. Firstly, the mere act of applying a cold compress (or a warm one, depending on your personal taste) to a sensitive area can be very soothing. Secondly, peppermint has a numbing effect that can help eliminate pain. And finally, the menthol in peppermint can help kill bacteria around your tooth!
To try this home remedy, simply take a used peppermint tea bag and allow it to cool in the freezer (or at room temperature, if you’d rather use a warm compress). Then, apply the bag directly to your toothache. The compress should provide you with a little relief.
Chew Some Garlic
Back in 2015, the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine published a study of natural remedies known to help with toothache. One remedy that showed some promise was garlic – no surprise, as garlic has long been considered a natural medicine. Garlic is an effective anti-inflammatory, which means it can help reduce swelling and pain around your tooth.
Some people suggest chewing on a clove of raw garlic to relieve toothache pain. However, if you don’t want to do any chewing (we get it), you can also make a paste out of crushed garlic and apply it to the affected area.
Dab on Vanilla Extract
Vanilla extract is an antioxidant, which means it can help slow damage to your cells caused by bacteria. Additionally, most vanilla extracts contain a small amount of alcohol, which means they can be effective pain relievers.
Simply dab a few drops of vanilla extract onto a cotton ball (or your finger). Then, apply the extract directly to your toothache. This should help relieve a little pain – and it may even keep bacteria at bay until you can get to the dentist!
Try OTC Medicine
Sometimes these natural remedies just aren’t effective enough. If you really can’t handle your tooth pain (or if you don’t have any of the previous ingredients handy), over-the-counter medication can be an effective way to get long-lasting relief. The most popular OTC options for toothaches are Ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil) and Acetaminophen (Tylenol).
While these medications can be effective, it is important to remember that they should be used in moderation. In large doses, ibuprofen can irritate organs like your stomach or kidneys. Acetaminophen can lead to liver damage if you take too much. Make sure you follow the instructions on your bottle!
When to Call Your Dentist
Of course, if your tooth pain persists for more than a day or two, the best thing you can do is call your dentist. Our team will be happy to help you find real, long-lasting relief – and we’ll make your teeth and gums healthier, too!Return to Blog