A toothache usually develops when it is least expected, and when it strikes, it strikes! It’s true sometimes a toothache may present as a dull throb. It may even go away for a period of time before it strikes again. But what happens when it’s a full-blown excruciating pain? Is there some way to relieve it on your own? Read on as your Lake Forest Dentist, Dr. Fondriest, discusses if and how you can cure your own toothache.
When Toothache Pain Strikes
It’s Christmas Day. You’re enjoying your annual family gathering, and suddenly a toothache strikes, knocking you off your feet. Your dental office is closed. It’s miles away, anyway, and, besides, you want to make the most of your day. Is there something you can do? There are many different remedies that can relieve toothache pain for a matter of time. However, the pain associated with a toothache is telling you there is a serious problem. Toothaches are a result of irritated, inflamed, or infected tooth pulp due to a loose filling, a crack in your tooth, decay, root exposure, an abscess, or gum disease. Therefore, the underlying problem will need treatment as soon as you can manage it. Until then you can try these home remedies:
- Warm Salt Water: A warm salt water solution works by extracting fluid from the irritated or infected tissue, decreasing the pressure and swelling on the nerves. The salt also helps fight infection. Mix half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and swish thoroughly.
- Hydrogen Peroxide: Mix equal parts hydrogen peroxide with water. Then, swish around in your mouth near the toothache to help relieve pain.
- Vanilla Extract: Saturate a cotton ball or cotton swab with the extract and place on the tooth. Other extracts have the same effect such as lemon, almond, and peppermint.
- Tea Tree Oil: Tea tree oil can be applied in any of three ways: with a saturated cotton ball, mixed with warm water as a rinse, or applied in drops directly to the tooth.
- Apple Cider Vinegar: Soak a cotton ball in the apple cider vinegar and place directly on tooth.
- Tea Bag: A used, warm tea bag placed against the tooth and gum can help relieve toothache pain due to the natural tannins in tea leaves that have numbing properties.
- Baking Soda: Add a heaping teaspoon of baking soda to warm water and rinse, or dip a water-dampened cotton ball into baking soda and place directly on tooth.
- Salt and Pepper: Mix equal amounts of salt and pepper with water to make a thick paste. Toothache pain can be relieved by applying the salt and pepper paste directly to the tooth for several days in a row.
- Salt and Garlic: Chewing raw garlic can help relieve a toothache because garlic possesses antibiotic and other healing properties. You can also add salt to crushed garlic cloves and apply the mixture directly to the tooth. This treatment should be continued for three or more consecutive days.
- Onion: More than a delicious addition to your meal, onions are known to possess antimicrobial and antiseptic properties. You can either chew a piece of raw onion, or put a piece of onion on your tooth to help relieve toothache pain.
- Cloves: Cloves possess many medicinal properties. They are an anti-inflammatory, an antioxidant, and an anesthetic. Therefore, they can help fight infection while alleviating toothache pain. Make a paste by mixing ground cloves with olive, vegetable, or other cooking oil, and apply directly to the tooth.
- Cucumber: You can either place a piece of room temperature cucumber directly onto the tooth, or make a paste by mashing cucumber with salt and packing around the tooth.
What Happens Once I Make it to the Dental Office?
Hopefully some of the remedies outlined above will help alleviate your pain. Even so, it is still important to have everything checked out by an experienced dentist, like Dr. Fondriest. When you arrive for an appointment at our practice, he will perform a full assessment of your affected tooth. X-rays or scans will also be taken to evaluate the health of the root and the supporting jawbone. This will also help Dr. Fondriest identify any cracks or fractures deep within the tooth. Once all information has been gathered, he will develop a personalized treatment plan to meet your needs.
Professional Toothache Treatments
The treatment used to address your toothache will depend on the cause of your discomfort. For example, if your pain is caused by a small cavity, a dental filling will suffice. If there is a large area of tooth decay, an inlay, onlay, or dental crown could be necessary.
In the event that a cavity or fracture has reached the center of the tooth, root canal therapy will be required to address the problem. During this treatment, an endodontist (root canal specialist) will numb you and then create an access hole in the top of the affected tooth. He then removes all living tissues, such as nerves and blood vessels, from inside the tooth. This eliminates infection at its source. Next, the canals and pulp chamber are filled, and the tooth is sealed. Oftentimes a crown is also placed to reinforce the tooth.
In severe cases, tooth extraction may be necessary. For example, if a fracture extends all the way down the length of the tooth into the root, it cannot be saved. If an extraction is recommended for you, we will also discuss the two main teeth replacement options: a dental bridge or a dental implant with you before removing the tooth.
Contact Your Lake Forest Dentist
If you are suffering from toothache pain, contact Dr. Fondriest, for a diagnosis and treatment options. Aside from providing dependable family, general, and restorative dentistry services to our community, Dr. James Fondriest also holds respected academic appointments at the Pankey Institute in Key Biscayne, FL, and the Spear Institute in Scottsdale, AZ, and he is an adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Prosthodontics at the University of Florida Dental School. At Lake Forest Dental Arts, Dr. Fondriest combines his impressive array of experience with modern technology and caring, compassionate, knowledgeable staff. Our practice mostly serves the Chicago metropolitan area including the North Shore and Northwest suburbs but we often get patients from all over the United States. To schedule a consultation, call our office today at (847) 234-0517.