Ugh…have you ever had an aching tooth in the middle of the night or on a weekend when you just can’t run down to your dentist? You just want some relief so you can carry on with your life. The good news is, there are many natural remedies you can use to make that painful area more comfortable and give you some temporary relief until you can get in to see your dentist.
If you’re a tea drinker, there are even a couple types of tea that are good for tooth pain, and can help alleviate that dull, constant pain that a toothache brings. Read on to find out which teas are best for treating toothaches, and other home remedies you may already have in your pantry or medicine cabinet.
Before we get started, it’s important to remember that all of these remedies can provide temporary pain relief in an affected tooth, if your pain lasts for more than a day or two, it’s important to seek professional dental care.
Make sure to talk to your dentist to find out the underlying cause of your toothache so you can rule out serious problems like tooth decay, gum disease, cracked tooth, broken tooth or other maladies that can result in toothache pain. And if you’re experiencing severe pain, definitely call your dental office.
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What can a natural home remedy do for a painful tooth?
Most of these remedies work by killing harmful bacteria in the mouth, acting as a natural anesthetic, and by calming painful inflammation in your mouth,
Why is Tea Good For A Sore Tooth?
If you’re a tea drinker you probably already know all the health benefits of tea.
Teas have a whole host of medicinal properties which make them effective natural toothache remedies:
- Anti-inflammatory properties which help with gum pain caused by irritated blood vessels
- Antibacterial properties which can act as a natural disinfectant against harmful bacteria
- Can act as a mouth rinse and natural antiseptic which can be swished around the mouth to gently remove any stuck food particles
- Tea is a great drink after wisdom teeth extraction due to its healthful properties.
Which Teas are the Best for Dental Pain?
While any tea can make you feel better when you’re feeling poorly, these three choices are the best teas to reach for if you’re experiencing a toothache.
Peppermint tea is known for it’s bacteria-fighting properties. Another benefit of this herbal tea is that peppermint oil has a numbing effect. There are several ways to use this herbal tisane to help the affected area.
- Take a peppermint tea bag and add to one cup of boiling water. Allow the tea to steep for 10 minutes. Then cool and use it as a mouth rinse. The peppermint oil in peppermint leaves can numb pain so it works as an effective mouth rinse.
- When done steeping, gently press the water out of the used tea bag and place in the freezer for a few minutes. Then use the chilled wet tea bag as a cold compress inside your mouth.
Since any true tea is a natural antibacterial and anti inflammatory agent, drinking a warm cup is a great idea if you’re experiencing toothache. As you sip, hold a bit in your mouth over the affected tooth before you swallow. Remember that a “true tea” is any tea made from the camellia sinensis plant, so make sure your choice is something like green tea or black tea, not an herbal variety.
When you’re done steeping, place the warm tea bag in the sore spot as an effective way to fight any bacteria there.
Willow Bark Tea
Willow bark tea, when brewed into an herbal tisane, is effective at relieving fever and pain that can come along with a toothache.
Guava Leaf Tea
Just like teas from the camellia sinensis plant, guava leaves have both anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties. If you have a guava tree or have access to guava leaves, you can make up an herbal tisane by chopping up the leaves, steeping them in boiling water and then drinking the resulting cup of tea to soothe your mouth pain.
More Natural Remedies to Treat a Tooth Ache
If you don’t have a cabinet full of tea like I do, there are other natural ways to treat tooth pain that you probably already have on hand. Here are several more great ideas to keep you from running to the drug store.
Cold Compress or Ice Pack
Using a cold compress on the outside of your cheek can help by constricting blood vessels that may be inflamed and causing your toothache. Applying cold can also reduce swelling while numbing the pain.
For best results, wrap a bag of ice in a towel before placing on the affected area for 20 minutes at a time. You can also wrap an ice cube in a washcloth and apply inside your mouth directly at the source of your pain.
A salt water rinse is a tried and true remedy for any kind of mouth issue. To make a rinse add one teaspoon of salt to a cup of warm water. Stir until dissolved. Use this warm salt water as a mouth rinse several times a day. Saltwater rinse works by increasing the pH of your mouth, making it harder for bacteria to thrive.
Hydrogen Peroxide Rinse
3 percent hydrogen peroxide when diluted with an equal amount of water acts as an antiseptic and can relieve mouth irritation. Dilute, then swish around in the mouth for 30 seconds, then spit out. You should never swallow hydrogen peroxide.
The combination of vanilla (an antioxidant which promotes healing) and alcohol (pain reliever) in vanilla extract make it a good home remedy for tooth ache. To use, put a small amount of vanilla extract on a cotton ball and place directly on the gums.
Clove oil is an antiseptic that has been used for centuries for mouth pain. To use put a drop of clove oil on a cotton ball or cotton swab and apply to the aching area. You can also use this essential oil as a mouth rinse by placing a few drops of clove oil in a small glass of water.
Whiskey And Other Alcohol
The best way to use drinking alcohol as a pain reliever is to soak a cotton ball and apply it to your tooth. The alcohol may make you feel better in more ways than one!
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a natural remedy that has multiple health benefits. A natural disinfectant, several drops of tea tree oil can be added to eight ounces of warm water to make a healthy mouthwash. Just swish around for a minute and then spit out. Tea tree oil mouthwash is also effective for bad breath.
Thyme oil is another essential oil that has antibacterial properties. Use it as a rinse by adding a few drops to a glass of water, or put a few drops on a cotton ball and put directly on your tooth.
It may seem strange, but a crushed or sliced garlic clove contains allicin, a compound with both antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. It has to be fresh garlic that’s been crushed, sliced, or chopped. You can either reap the benefits by chewing a clove of garlic and placing the resulting mush on your tooth, or crushing the garlic and then applying it to your toothache
Note: the garlic has to be freshly crushed or sliced. Garlic powder won’t work and neither will a whole uncrushed clove of garlic.
Over the Counter Pain Relievers
If all the natural remedies fail you, there’s always over the counter pain medication like ibuprofen and naproxen. These target both pain and inflammation which is useful for tooth pain caused by inflamed nerves. You can also find tooth numbing gel at the drug store which are applied topically the gums.
What causes a toothache?
Toothaches are caused by many different reasons. Which is why, if you’re not getting any short-term relief from these natural remedies, it’s a good idea to pay a visit to your dental office to rule out serious tooth infection. Waiting too long can cause a small problem to fester into the need for more serious intervention like a root canal. Here are some common causes of toothache:
- Broken or cracked tooth
- Teeth grinding (bruxism)
- Tooth decay
- Gum irritation
- Irritation of the nerve at the root of the tooth
How to prevent toothaches
Most toothaches and dental problems in general can be prevented by good dental hygiene: brushing twice a day with a soft toothbrush and flossing daily. It’s important to see your dentist every 6 months as well to keep your mouth and teeth healthy.
The Takeaway: Several teas are good for toothache
Along with peppermint tea, true teas, and herbal tea made from guava leaves, there are many other natural home remedies to help you treat a toothache. From essential oils, to items you may have in your pantry like salt and garlic, these remedies are a good short term solution to try until you can get proper dental care.
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