If you have a toothache, see your dentist as soon as possible. There are many causes of toothaches so it is important to have a proper diagnosis because treatment for a toothache depends on the reason for the pain.
You may be able to relieve the pain of a toothache overnight, but the only way to get rid of a toothache completely is to have the cause diagnosed and to receive the proper treatment.
Home remedies can help ease the pain of a toothache overnight while you wait for your scheduled dentist appointment, such as:
- Keep your head in an upright position
- Avoid eating cold, hard, or acidic food right before going to bed
- Over-the-counter (OTC) medicines
- Cold compresses or ice packs/cold gel packs wrapped in a towel
- Apply for 20 minutes at a time
- A hot pack applied to the cheek over the painful area
- Pain-relieving oral gel
- Rinse with saltwater
- Rinse with a guava mouthwash
- Clove oil
- Can reduce inflammation and has numbing properties
- Apply a small amount of the oil to a clean cotton ball and dab it on the affected area
- Crush a garlic clove into a sticky paste and apply it to the affected area for pain relief, or chew a clove of fresh garlic and spit it out
- Peppermint tea bags
- These have mild numbing properties and may be applied while warm or cold
- Rinse with homemade thyme mouthwash
- Add a few drops of thyme essential oil to water to make a mouthwash
- Research acupressure points
- There are several reported to help relieve toothache
At the dentist, treatment for a toothache depends on the cause.
Treatment for enamel damage caused by cavities, chips, or cracks may include:
- Dental fillings
- Topical varnish, applied as a liquid that hardens to protect the exposed tooth roots
Treatment for an infection may include:
- Removing the infected tissue (for example, with a root canal)
Impacted wisdom teeth may need to be removed.
What Are Symptoms of a Toothache?
Symptoms of a toothache may include:
- Sharp pain
- Shooting pain when you eat or drink something hot or cold or sweet or sour
- May also occur due to pressure, such as from toothbrushing or biting
- Dull, throbbing pain
- Pain may involve an area in or around the mouth and jaw
- May be a steady ache that continues for days
- Bad breath, if the toothache is caused by infection or decay
What Causes a Toothache?
Causes of toothaches include:
- Cracked teeth
- Exposed tooth root
- Impacted wisdom teeth
How Is a Toothache Diagnosed?
- The cause of a toothache is diagnosed with a patient history and a dental examination.
- Dental X-rays may be taken to help determine the area or extent of the problem.
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