Tooth pain is both an incredibly annoying and ache-ridden experience. It can result from several things: dental decay, injury, and infection among them. Often, tooth pain is exacerbated by one or more activities, such as: biting and chewing food, oral contact with hot or cold foods, swelling of the gums, and so on.
Developing cavities is also a common cause of tooth pain, and usually results from progressive tooth decay. Cavities occur when enamel (the hard, outer layer) of the teeth is exposed to acid-producing bacteria, which forms a sticky layer of plaque. Left untreated, this bacterial film effectively erodes the minerals contained in enamel.
The best way to counteract tooth pain is – you guessed it – to prevent it in the first place. This is achieved through good oral hygiene habits; such as brushing twice a day, using mouthwash, and flossing regularly.
That said, tooth pain can still surface despite the practice of regular oral hygiene. To complicate matters, treating the root cause (no pun intended) of tooth pain can be expensive and time-consuming. Fortunately, there are natural remedies that may be successful in alleviating some of that dastardly pain.
Here are nine natural remedies for tooth pain and cavities:
A word of caution, first: you may need to try one, two, or even more remedies to discover what works for you.
1. Cold or ice water & lemon juice
Lemon juice has proven to be an effective cavity fighter. Mix some of this potent juice with a glass of cold or ice water and rinse 3-4 times daily.
Also, ice may be used as a pain reliever. Wrap a few cubes in a hand towel (or paper towel) and apply to the area near infected tooth. This should relieve and numb some of the pain.
2. Cranberry juice
Per the Dental Health Magazine, drinking 3-4 ounces of (sugar-free) cranberry juice can help prevent some of the bacteria that causes tooth decay.
Consumption of cranberry juice may complicate the health of individuals with kidney disease, and potentially those on blood thinners. As such, it is necessary to consult with a health professional in these circumstances.
3. Take Vitamin D
Some research exists showing that people with higher vitamin D levels are at lower risk for developing gum disease and other conditions. The solution here is quite simple: get out into the sun! For some reason, if sunlight exposure is not possible, prioritize the vitamin in your diet or supplement it.
4. Apply alcohol
No, we’re not suggesting that you drink booze to relieve the pain. Applying (not consuming) alcohol-heavy substance (e.g. vanilla extract) can relieve tooth pain in the short-term. Simply apply a small amount directly onto the problem site to provide some relief.
5. Tea tree oil!
Dental Health Magazine also recommends applying tea oil to help promote oral health. While the pain relieving properties of this essential oil are up for debate, it does serve the role of preventing serious dental conditions such as gingivitis and gum disease.
6. Rinse with salt water
The combination of warm water and salt (preferably, sea salt) has shown to alleviate some forms of tooth pain. The prescription here is quite simple: mix a small glass with a teaspoon or two of salt and rinse for 30 seconds. Of course, do not swallow! Gross…
7. Brush with mustard oil
Okay, so this suggestion doesn’t sound all that appealing… but mustard oil is another oil product with pain-relieving properties. Mixing mustard oil with lemon juice (of course!) and brushing 2 or 3 times per day may alleviate tooth pain. Those with cavity problems should consider brushing with the combination immediately prior to brushing with toothpaste to counteract symptoms.
Yes, wheatgrass…or wheatgrass juice. Like most items on this list, wheatgrass contains elements that promote pain relief. Wheatgrass is different, however, in that it can be either chewed or consumed as a drink. Wheatgrass also contains preventative elements that may be beneficial for averting tooth decay.
Okay, about time we went ahead and gave lemon its due credit. The fruit contains potent anti-bacterial properties that are beneficial in many ways… simply chewing on a slice of lemon can bring clean up some of that bacteria. Mixing lemon – in the form of lemon juice – and brushing your teeth has additional benefits such as preventing cavities.