If you have a toothache, see your dentist as soon as possible. There are so many reasons for toothaches so it is important to have a proper diagnosis of the cause because treatment for a toothache depends on the reason for the pain.
You may be able to relieve the pain of a toothache, but the only way to make a toothache go away is to determine the cause and receive the proper treatment. Home remedies can help ease the pain of a toothache while you wait for your scheduled dentist appointment, such as those listed in the table below.
|Cold compresses or ice packs/cold gel packs wrapped in a towel||Apply for 20 minutes at a time|
|A hot pack||Apply to the cheek over the painful area|
|Over-the-counter (OTC) medicines||
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) for pain and inflammation
Acetaminophen (Tylenol) for pain
Pain-relieving oral gel
|Apply to the painful tooth or area|
|Eating soft foods||Avoid any foods that could irritate or break the tooth|
|Eating with caution||Avoid chewing on the side with the sore tooth|
|Rinse with saltwater||Swish with a warm saltwater rinse to help prevent infection and soothe your pain|
Rinse with a guava mouthwash
Rinse with homemade thyme mouthwash
Peppermint tea bags
|Pressing on acupressure points||
Dental Treatments for Toothache
Once you see 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?
Toothaches may be caused by:
- 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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