Finding a natural alternative to medicines is always great, but in the case of oral pain medication, it can also be life-saving: many of these medications contain a topical anesthetic called benzocaine, which can have a rare but dangerous side effect that lowers oxygen levels in the blood. Try one of these natural remedies for toothache pain instead, and get to a dentist as soon as possible to find out why you might have a painful tooth.
Did you know that garlic can soothe tooth pain? Plus, the herb’s antibiotic and antibacterial powers can stave off infection. Mince or mash the garlic and rub it over the tooth like a paste. Leave on for 15-20 minutes for relief. (It’ll stink, but remember this is only temporary!)
Try this acupressure trick to relieve your toothache. First, find the fleshy web of skin between your thumb and forefinger—this is your target pressure point. Cover an ice cube with a paper towel or soft cloth to protect your skin, then press it against this V-shape pressure point and hold for about 10 minutes. Cold pressure on this spot will interfere with the nerve associated with tooth pain.
Clove Oil for Toothaches
Clove oil has been a go-to toothache reliever for ages. In fact, it was used for its painkilling abilities long before anesthetics were made available in dentistry. If you don’t have clove oil, whole cloves can also do the trick! Pop two or three cloves in your mouth and leave them so they get wet and soft. Press down on the softened cloves with your healthy teeth, without biting through them, just until their oils seep out. Push the cloves over to your hurting tooth and let sit for 30 minutes to soothe the pain.
Are you a tea drinker? You can use a black tea bag as a compress to ease your toothache. Soak it in hot or warm water, then apply to the sore tooth. The astringency in the tea’s tannins will help relieve swollen gums and reduce pain.
Spicy-Hot Tooth Pain Relief
The next time a tooth hurts, reach for the spice rack! Combine powdered ginger and cayenne pepper in a small bowl, then add enough water to form a paste. Coat a cotton ball with the paste, then place in your mouth directly on the painful tooth—try to avoid touching your tongue and gums, as this will burn! If you can stand the heat, wait until the pain subsides before you remove it. Both ginger and cayenne are fantastic pain relievers; if you’re out of either spice, try a turmeric paste using the same technique.
Hydrogen Peroxide to the Rescue
Although only short-term, this hydrogen peroxide rinse can help ease your tooth pain and fight the bacteria that might be causing infection. Combine equal parts warm water and three percent hydrogen peroxide. Swish the solution around in your mouth—focusing on the side that hurts—and spit it out (don’t swallow hydrogen peroxide).
Peppermint Can Help
Peppermint not only tastes refreshing, it also offers anti-inflammatory and anesthetic powers that can soothe your toothache. Brew some peppermint tea for pain relief: Boil one cup of water and add two teaspoons dried peppermint leaves or a peppermint tea bag. Cover and steep for 10-15 minutes, and let cool. Strain out the leaves or remove the tea bag, then sip and swish until your pain subsides. Peppermint oil works on tooth pain too; its bacteria-fighting properties make it a popular ingredient in toothpastes. Sop up some oil with a cotton ball and press against the sore tooth.
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