A toothache can cause discomfort and make eating or drinking very difficult. It can cause throbbing and swelling around the affected area, a sharp pain when you bite down, fever and a burning or shock-like pain. Fortunately, effective natural remedies for toothache exist. Here are seven of them. (h/t to MedicalNewsToday.com)
Menthol, the active compound in peppermint, has a numbing effect that may decrease the pain caused by a toothache. For temporary relief, swish some peppermint tea in your mouth or suck on a peppermint tea bag. Allow a used tea bag to cool first before applying it to the affected area. Alternatively, you can chill the tea bag in the freezer for a few minutes before applying.
Allicin, the main active compound in garlic, has a strong antibacterial effect that can help kill the bacteria in your mouth that cause cavities and toothache. To relieve pain, simply chew on a clove of garlic. Alternatively, you can crush a garlic clove and turn it into a paste. Mix the paste with a bit of salt for best results.
Cloves have been used as a traditional remedy for toothache for centuries, thanks to eugenol, one of the main active compounds in cloves which is a natural antiseptic. According to one study, people who applied eugenol to their gums and socket after a tooth extraction experienced less pain and inflammation during healing. (Related: The toothache tree: Native survival medicine for pain and other uses.)
To use cloves, soak some ground up cloves in water to create a paste. You can either apply this paste directly to your tooth or place it in an empty tea bag before applying. Another way is to dab a small amount of clove oil — diluted with a few drops of carrier oil or water — on a cotton ball. Gently apply the oil to the affected area a few times a day.
Alternatively, you can gently chew or suck on a dried clove to relieve a toothache.
One of the simplest ways to deal with a toothache is to elevate your head. To do so, place an extra pillow or two beneath your head. Pooling blood in the head may cause inflammation and additional pain, so keeping your head elevated while trying to sleep can help relieve pain caused by an aching tooth.
Salt water rinse
Salt water is a natural disinfectant that can help deal with bacterial infection. It can also help reduce inflammation around the affected tooth. Rinsing with salt water may even help dislodge small food particles stuck between your teeth.
To make a salt water rinse, mix half a teaspoon of salt with a glass of warm water and use it as a mouthwash. Do this daily until the toothache disappears.
Hydrogen peroxide rinse
If you want something stronger than a salt water rinse, try gargling with diluted hydrogen peroxide. In addition to killing bacteria in your mouth, a hydrogen peroxide rinse can also help heal your bleeding gums and reduce plaque.
To make a hydrogen peroxide rinse, dilute food grade hydrogen peroxide with equal parts water. Swish the solution in your mouth as you would a mouthwash then spit it out. Don’t let children use this rinse as they might accidentally swallow the hydrogen peroxide solution.
Using a cold compress can also help relieve a toothache. If you don’t have a compress bag, grab a towel or a clean piece of cloth and wrap some ice cubes with it. Apply this compress to the affected area for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Do this every few hours until the pain fully subsides.