How to Treat a Toothache at Home

Are you suffering from a toothache and don’t know how to deal with it? Don’t worry, in this article you will learn how to treat your toothache at home, quickly and safely.

Quick facts: Treating A Toothache At Home

  • ✅ Ice packs provide temporary relief for toothache pain (WebMD).
  • ✅ Saltwater rinses are effective at reducing inflammation around a toothache (Medical News Today).
  • ✅ Over-the-counter pain medications like ibuprofen can temporarily mask the pain of a toothache (Mayo Clinic).
  • ✅ Clove oil is a common home remedy for toothache pain (BBC News).
  • ✅ Chewing gum can help relieve the pain of a toothache, as it increases saliva production and reduces acidity (ADA Mouth Healthy).
  • Checkout this video:

    Understand the Cause of the Pain

    A toothache can be caused by a variety of different issues, from cavities to abscessed teeth. In order to treat a toothache effectively, it is important to identify the source of the pain.

    Some common causes are:

    • Infection
    • Broken teeth
    • Tooth grinding

    It is important to understand the underlying cause of the pain before making any decisions on how to treat the toothache.

    Identify common causes of toothache

    Identifying the cause of a toothache can help you treat it at home. Common causes for a sore tooth include:

    • Tooth decay, which can happen when acids produced by plaque bacteria dissolve away the enamel of your teeth. If left untreated, decay can reach the soft, inner layer of the teeth and cause pain and sensitivity.
    • An infection or abscess, which is when a pocket of pus is formed near the root of your tooth. This most often happens when food particles get trapped in between teeth or in deep crevices and aren’t removed with brushing and flossing.
    • Cracked teeth, usually caused by chewing hard foods like ice cubes or hard candy, grinding on your teeth while asleep (bruxism), clenching your jaw excessively, or having weak enamel due to genetics or poor oral hygiene habits.

    Treatment for each condition will vary depending on the severity of the issue and may require professional care from a dentist.

    Identify the source of the pain

    When trying to treat a toothache at home, the first step is to identify the source of the pain. This can be done through a process of elimination by assessing any recent dental work you have had, evaluating your diet and lifestyle choices, and inspecting your mouth for any obvious signs of decay or infection.

    • For example, if you recently had an extraction or root canal, that could explain the pain.
    • If you are a smoker or eat excessive amounts of sugar, these habits could also cause toothaches.
    • Additionally, if your gums appear to be inflamed or swollen around one particular tooth – especially if there is visible decay present – that likely accounts for the discomfort.

    Once you have narrowed down what might be causing the pain in your mouth, then you can figure out how best to treat it.

    Home Remedies

    Suffering from a toothache can be one of the most inconvenient and painful experiences. Fortunately, there are a few home remedies that could potentially help you relieve the pain and discomfort. We will explore these remedies in more detail in this article.

    Apply a cold compress

    Applying a cold compress is a classic home remedy for a toothache. Applying something cold to the affected area can help reduce inflammation, providing relief from pain.

    To make a cold compress, wrap some ice cubes in a cloth or handkerchief, ensuring that the cloth does not become wet. Place the cloth on your face over the affected area for five to 10 minutes at a time. Remove it and wait for five minutes before repeating the process again. You can also try placing an ice pack or bag of frozen vegetables on your face if it proves more comfortable than the homemade cloth-wrapped ice cube method. Do not apply either too long to avoid damage caused by prolonged exposure to extreme temperatures.

    Rinse your mouth with salt water

    Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water is a popular home remedy for toothache. To do this, mix a teaspoon of salt into a glass of warm water, and swish the mixture around your mouth for 30 seconds. The salt helps to reduce inflammation by drawing out excess fluid, while the warm temperature of the water can help reduce pain. Be sure not to swallow any of the liquid while swishing it around your mouth.

    After rinsing with salt water, spit out any remaining solution and rinse with plain water. This remedy can be repeated as often as necessary to relieve pain from your toothache.

    Take over-the-counter pain relievers

    Taking over-the-counter (OTC) medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen is a simple and effective way to relieve toothache pain. Both ibuprofen and acetaminophen help to reduce inflammation and reduce pain.

    When taking OTC pain relievers, make sure to follow the instructions listed on the label, including not exceeding the maximum daily dosage. It is also important to note that these medications may not be suitable for everyone, so it’s best to speak with your doctor if you have any medical questions before taking any medication for a toothache.

    Additionally, some people prefer natural remedies as opposed to medications when treating toothaches at home.


    It is important to take preventative measures to reduce the risk of toothache occurring in the first place. Adopting a regular dental hygiene routine is key.

    • Brushing teeth at least twice a day,
    • flossing,
    • and using an antiseptic mouthwash can help to reduce the build-up of bacteria and plaque.

    Avoiding foods that are high in sugar and acid can also help to prevent tooth decay and other dental problems.

    Practice good oral hygiene

    Practicing good oral hygiene is one of the simplest and most effective ways to prevent toothaches at home. Brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing once per day can help to remove plaque and bacteria that can cause cavities, gum disease, and other oral health issues.

    It is also important to see a dentist regularly for checkups and cleanings. This will help the dentist identify any potential dental issues that could lead to a toothache before they become serious. Additionally, avoiding acidic and sugary foods, as well as not smoking or using tobacco products, can also help to reduce your risk of developing a toothache.

    Avoid sugary and acidic foods

    When suffering from a toothache, it is important to avoid sugary and acidic foods. Sugary foods, such as candy and soda, can cause bacteria to grow and worsen the pain of a toothache. Acidic foods and drinks, such as orange juice and tomatoes, can also contribute to dental sensitivity by weakening the enamel on your teeth. Additionally, consuming too many sugary or acidic items can lead to cavities or other oral health issues.

    It’s best to avoid sugary or acidic foods if you are experiencing a toothache in order to prevent further damage or pain. Instead of sugary or acidic foods, try eating softer fruits like applesauce or mashed bananas that won’t irritate your toothache while still providing the necessary nutrients for your body.

    Avoid chewing hard objects

    The best way to prevent a toothache is to keep your teeth and gums healthy by brushing, flossing, and visiting the dentist regularly for check-ups and cleanings. Additionally, it’s important to avoid chewing on hard objects, such as ice cubes or popcorn kernels. Chewing hard items can cause the enamel on your teeth to crack, exposing the more sensitive inner layer of your teeth. This can lead to further damage and make you more susceptible to pain from toothaches.

    If you are experiencing a dull soreness in your teeth or a sharp pain when you eat something cold or hot, be sure to visit your dentist for an exam as soon as possible. Early detection can help make sure any problem is addressed quickly and effectively before it becomes worse.

    When to See a Dentist

    It’s important to recognize when a toothache requires a visit to the dentist. Some toothaches can be treated at home, but severe pain should not be ignored. Dental issues such as infections, decay, or fractures require professional attention and may need to be treated by a dentist as soon as possible.

    Let’s look at when you should see a dentist for a toothache:

    Seek medical attention if the pain persists

    No one wants to experience a toothache, but unfortunately they can and do happen. If your toothache persists or gets worse over the course of a few days and is accompanied by other worrisome symptoms, like an abscess in the gums, redness, swelling or difficulty chewing and swallowing food, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. In severe cases, a visit to a dental professional may be necessary as delaying treatment can worsen your condition.

    At home remedies such as rinsing with saltwater or using cold compress may help ease minor discomfort associated with toothache. However if the pain doesn’t improve after 3-4 days of home care then it’s time to see a dentist for further evaluation and treatment. Depending on the source of pain, your dentist may suggest medications to help reduce inflammation and/or antibiotics if there is infection present. They may also recommend a dental procedure such as filling cavities or removing broken teeth in order to relieve discomfort from the source.

    Schedule regular checkups with your dentist

    It is very important to schedule regular checkups with your dentist. Not only should you have a dental exam every six months, but your dentist can also look for any potential problems at an early stage. Signs of gum disease, for example, can often be spotted before symptoms even begin and are easier to treat when caught early. Cleanings twice a year can also help reduce plaque buildup and help prevent more serious issues from developing.

    Additionally, your dentist may recommend certain products or suggest lifestyle changes that could help you maintain good oral health. Scheduling regular assessments of the condition of your teeth can save you time, energy and money in the long run.

    FAQs about: Treating A Toothache At Home

    Q: What can I do to treat a toothache at home?
    A: You can take ibuprofen or acetaminophen to help manage the pain. Rinse your mouth with warm salt water or a mild antiseptic rinse. You can also apply a cold compress to the outside of your cheek to help reduce swelling and ease the pain.

    Q: What kind of home remedies can I try to treat a toothache?
    A: You can try swishing with a mild salt water solution, using clove oil for numbing, rinsing with baking soda and water, using an ice pack, or gargling with apple cider vinegar. You should also avoid hot or cold foods and drinks and brush and floss your teeth regularly.

    Q: When should I see a dentist for a toothache?
    A: You should see a dentist if your toothache does not go away after a few days, if you have swelling or redness in your face, if you have a fever, or if you have difficulty chewing or swallowing.

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