Before you get too deep into the many ideas that have been suggested as treatment for toothaches, it might be wise to understand the two key words used in the phrase. Start with “toothache.” Here are two definitions. You will find hundreds of other definitions online.
The Mayo Clinic states that tooth decay is the main cause of toothaches for both children and adults. The food you eat leaves sugars and starches behind that are an excellent breeding ground for bacteria.
As the bacteria grow, they form plaque on the surface of the tooth. This produces acid that eats through the enamel coating of teeth, eventually creating a cavity.
After a cavity develops, you will notice pain when you eat sweets, or put something very cold or very hot in your mouth (ice cream, hot coffee etc.) Toothaches may also be caused by food accumulating between the teeth, by an infection in the gums or at the tooth root, or from injury that damages the teeth. Sinus infection may also lead to tooth pain, especially in the upper layer of teeth.
Sources that take a more commercial view of this subject, such as insurance companies, dentists, and product manufacturers, provide the same information. They list infection, gum disease, grinding teeth, injury, and, of course, tooth decay, as the major causes of toothaches. They also mention the pain experienced when you eat something sweet, very hot, or very cold.
What about treatment. This can take many forms. For millions of people, the obvious choice for treatment of a toothache is a visit to the dentist.
This is certainly not a bad idea, especially if the pain continues for several days, or if there is injury that requires physical repair. However, there are excellent alternatives, some of which may be found at Dentist Be Damned.
What is Treatment?
The Oxford Dictionary (and every other dictionary) defines treatment as “medical care given to a patient for illness or injury.” It can also be “the administration of a dose of medicine.”
So, when you use a product off the shelf or a natural, home remedy, you are treating yourself. The level of treatment depends on who administers it and what you do during the process.
There is another path when it comes to treatment, which involves a bit of shopping and spending. If you go to a pharmacy, a grocery store or other general-merchandise shop, you will usually find over-the-counter products made specifically relieving toothaches. These certainly qualify as treatment for toothaches, if not for treatment of the root cause.
This should be enough information for anyone to make a decision about treating toothaches. If you have an injury or serious decay that could affect long term health, you may have no better option than to make an appointment with your dentist.
If you have a toothache that has not progressed too far, and is causing you pain, you may find what you need at Dentist Be Damned.
At the top of the list, as many people know, is clove oil. This essential oil provides relief for thousands of people. It is an ingredient in some over-the-counter products. Individuals have also found relief from ginger root, garlic, and black tea. A quick online search will give you information about these popular and effective methods.
What about some lesser known natural remedies? One of the most interesting (and effective) is asafoetida, a gum/resin from the tap root of Ferula. This herb is native to Iran and Afghanistan, though it is also cultivated in India. It has a nasty smell, but it is also known as “food of the gods” for its pain-relief properties.
You may also want to try potato. Simply peel one, cut it into pieces, then take a piece and place it on the problem tooth. Sprinkling a bit of salt on the piece can help with this method.
Another easy, natural method involves two basic ingredients – water and salt. A teaspoon of salt in a glass of water can be used as a mouthwash or rinse to provide relief.
If you are interested in using homeopathic medicines such as arnica, hypericum, or belladonna, you should first learn as much about them as you can. There is plenty of information out there about the side effects and dangers of natural medicines.