If you’ve ever had a toothache, you know how excruciating it can be. Pain that might be only a minor annoyance somewhere else turns into a throbbing torture experience when it happens around a tooth. Tooth pain can be a sign of numerous problems, including gum disease and cavities. It’s important to make an appointment with a dentist and get everything checked out before an infection can spread or more serious damage can occur. However, while you’re waiting to keep your appointment with the dentist, here are some things that might help ease the pain in the meantime.
There are a number of over the counter pain medications, but ibuprofen is the leader when it comes to helping kill tooth pain. Tylenol and aspirin have their place, but ibuprofen acts as an anti-swelling agent as well as a pain reliever. Many incidences of tooth pain flare up when there is some degree of swelling in the mouth. If you treat both this and the pain at the same time, you may find you have better success. If needed, try using an ice pack along with the ibuprofen to combat the swelling from two angles.
Over the counter numbing creams can also help with immediate tooth pain relief. These creams come in brand names such as Orajel. You simply cut the tip off the tube and squeeze a little bit of the cream out onto your finger or a Q-tip. You can then rub the cream directly on the painful area. It tends to glob up when it meets saliva, so be patient while trying to get it around the area. If you don’t want to go out and buy one of these creams, there are solutions that you can use around the house. Various extracts such as vanilla and peppermint are highly concentrated with alcohol. Rubbing these along the painful site can produce similar results. Some would even say they produce better results.
Sometimes tooth pain is caused by something directly irritating the gums or teeth. Make sure you brush really well and swish with a mouthwash to get any food particles out that could be stuck in between your teeth and causing pain. If this is the case and the pain is relieved, make sure you keep your appointment with the dentist. Food stuck between your teeth should not cause much pain, so if this is case, there is almost certainly an underlying reason and you should get a checkup.