- Slideshow: Top Problems in Your Mouth
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- Dental (Oral) Health Quiz
- Patient Comments: Toothache - Remedies
- Patient Comments: Toothache - Experience
- Patient Comments: Toothache - Treatment
- Patient Comments: Toothache - Symptoms
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- What is a toothache?
- What causes a toothache?
- What are toothache symptoms and signs?
- How is a toothache diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for a toothache?
- Are home remedies effective for a toothache?
- How is a toothache treated during pregnancy?
- What is the prognosis for a toothache?
- Is it possible to prevent a toothache?
Quick GuideTop Problems in Your Mouth
Are home remedies effective for a toothache?
Generally, home remedies are only effective as a temporary measure to calm a severe toothache and are not intended to cure the problem. How does one try to stop a toothache fast without the aid of a dental professional? Oral pain medication will be a key step. Over-the-counter pain medicines such as ibuprofen (Advil) or naproxen (Aleve) are called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and are best taken on a schedule to provide pain relief. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is an alternative painkiller. In some cases, alternating doses of ibuprofen and acetaminophen is effective.
Additionally, clove oil is a natural remedy that is used in some sedative dental filling materials and can be found at the pharmacy. It can be applied to an exposed area of the tooth by biting into a small cotton ball that is soaked with clove oil. This may help stop a toothache temporarily. Other products which contain benzocaine (including Orajel or Anbesol) can temporarily numb the affected tooth or gums and provide pain relief as well.
To help a toothache until treatment can be found, one should avoid chewing on the affected tooth/area and minimize extreme temperatures of hot and cold. Keeping the area clean and free of food debris may help as well. If swelling of the surrounding gums or tissues is present, immediate treatment with a dentist or physician is advised to avoid the spread of infection. Home remedies are meant to temporarily alleviate pain, but not to treat infection.
Above all, proper diagnosis and timely treatment by a dental professional is strongly advised to effectively treat a toothache.
How is a toothache treated during pregnancy?
Dental treatment can be safely performed during pregnancy as long as a few guidelines are followed.
Generally, if dental work is required to treat a toothache, the recommended time for treatment is during the second trimester of pregnancy. However, if there is a risk of infection or severe pain, dental treatment may need to be performed at any point during a pregnancy. The obstetrician is consulted on what would be the safest option to avoid any possible complications during dental treatment.
If a dental X-ray is needed, a lead apron is always used for every patient. For a pregnant patient, this is particularly important in protecting the unborn child.
Careful consideration should be made to ensure that any medications that are used are safe during pregnancy. This applies to local anesthetics administered during dental treatment and antibiotics (such as amoxicillin [Amoxil, Trimox, Moxatag, Larotid]) taken before or after treatment. Over-the-counter drugs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen are avoided as these are not considered safe during pregnancy. Acetaminophen is considered safe for pain management.