General Dentistry |3 min read

How You Can Stop a Toothache and Reduce Pain Fast

Tooth pain always occurs when you least expect it. Either you’re out for dinner with your significant other or you’re having a pleasant holiday with your family. Tooth pain can ruin any fun get together, but the last thing you should do is wait to have it examined.

If you’re experiencing a toothache, you should go see your dentist as soon as you can. But sometimes this answer isn’t helpful when it’s the middle of the night, your dentist is home asleep, and you’re in some serious pain.

In today’s post, we’re sharing with you some of the best ways to get out of pain from toothaches or gum pain, what you can do to minimize pain while you wait to get into the dentist, and some of the common pitfalls people succumb to that make the pain worse.

Follow the 3-3-3 Method

To reduce tooth pain you have to control the swelling. When you reduce swelling you’ll reduce pain. One of the most effective ways to reduce inflammation in the short term is to use the 3-3-3 method. With this strategy, you take three Advil (600 mg total) three times a day, for three days.

What makes this method so effective is sticking with it, so don’t back off once you start to get pain relief. Keep the Advil levels up otherwise, the inflammation will come back and so will the pain.

Remember that this method won’t address the root cause of your tooth pain. Whatever’s causing the pain needs to be addressed, which means you need to visit the dentist as soon as possible. If you’re still experiencing pain, speak with your doctor about adding ibuprofen in your pain-fighting regimen.

Natural Pain-Fighting Remedies

If you’re one of the many people who can’t take Advil, there are several natural methods you can use to keep the pain down.

  1. Salt Rinse: Pour a glass of warm to hot water and slowly stir in Himalayan or dead sea salt. (Stick to fine grain or extra-fine grain.) Allow time for the salt to dissolve. Use this solution to rinse four or five times a day. This will reduce inflammation and help the tissues contract. We recommend using this rinse whenever you have gum pain or a foreign body like a sesame seed stuck between your gums.
  2. Apply Clove Oil: If you haven’t started working with essential oils, now is a good time to give it a try. Clove oil can help with pain relief and is as strong as benzocaine. Its active ingredient is eugenol which occurs in nature but should be used with some caution. You can find clove oil at your local health food store or in the organic section of your supermarket. To use this method, apply a small amount (one or two drops max) to a cotton swab and apply it gently to the inflamed area. This method will help if the tooth nerve is exposed because of a deep cavity. When applying the clove oil, be sure you’re placing it on the pulpal tissue or the inner substance of the tooth, otherwise, it won’t help.
  3. Use a Pillow: Keeping your head elevated will greatly reduce swelling and pain. When you go to sleep, elevate your head with a wedge-shaped pillow or by stacking multiple pillows on top of each other. Lying down drops your head to the same level of your heart, which changes the blood supply to your head. Elevating your head will help prevent the swelling and pain from getting worse.
  4. Use Cold Compresses: Applying cold compresses such as a Ziploc bag with half water and half ice or a bag of frozen vegetables will help keep the pain from increasing.

Toothaches are often signs of a more serious dental issue. If you’re experiencing dental pain or swelling, make an appointment with the dental staff at Joyner Dental Arts right away. You can even call us any time of the day or night at 319-377-6504 – we’re available 24/7.

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