November 25, 2020
Irritation from a toothache can be especially painful and if a patient cannot get immediate treatment from a dentist, it is important to find a solution to help treat the pain until they can get an appointment. Over-the-counter pain medication is a common solution, but another natural remedy is clove oil.
What causes a toothache?
A toothache can feel like a sharp pain or a dull ache that originates from the tooth or radiates up the jaw or into the ear canal. Patients might also notice a foul taste in the mouth, a fever, or swelling around the area. Most toothaches stem from decay or periodontal infection, but an injury or an abscess can also cause a toothache. Other common causes include damaged fillings or dental work, grinding teeth, or infections in the mouth. In some cases, a sinus infection, shingles, or other diseases can also mimic toothache symptoms.
Can clove oil relieve a toothache?
Yes. Clove has been used for centuries as a pain relief technique. It contains eugenol which is a natural remedy that numbs the pain. Clove oil also has anti-inflammatory properties to reduce irritation and swelling in the area. If patients do not have clove oil on hand, they could place a whole clove or ground clove into the infected tooth. It may not be as effective but can provide some relief. Patients can find clove oil in the home remedies section of the pharmacy or the medicinal section of the supermarket.
Steps to apply clove oil
• Squeeze several drops of oil into a dish
• If using a stronger essential oil it is important to dilute with a neutral carrier oil such as coconut oil
• Soak the cotton swab or cotton ball in the oil
• Rub the oil directly on the sore area or apply it to the area for 5 to 10 minutes
• Reapply every 2 or 3 hours for temporary relief
Potential side effects of clove oil
For some, clove oil is extremely unpleasant to taste. And if ingested, clove oil can cause burning in the nose and throat, upset stomach, diarrhea, or difficult breathing.
Other toothache remedies
First, try flossing to see if something caught between teeth is causing pain. But do not use any metal objects, like a needle, to dry and dislodge buildup between teeth. Patients can also apply a cold compress to the area outside of the mouth that hurts. This will help reduce inflammation and temporarily relieve pain. Another option is using an over the counter oral anesthetic like benzocaine. These oral gels work much like clove oil to provide temporary relief. Try a warm, saltwater rinse. This helps reduce infection and inflammation. Another option is to take an over-the-counter, anti-inflammatory medication to reduce pain and swelling.
What patients should do when they experience toothache
If a patient experiences a toothache, temporary pain relief will only get them so far. For permanent relief, it is necessary to treat the underlying cause. If a tooth is decayed, cracked, or chipped it is important to get care from a dental professional right away. It is also important to keep the teeth clean, keep the head elevated, and avoid eating anything too cold, hard, or acidic.