Maida Smiles (W. London)

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21 Apr

How to relieve dental pain


Somehow even when we brush our teeth regularly, dental pain can still occur.

If you can´t get to the dentist right away, here are some tips that may relieve your discomfort before you can book an appointment. If you have any problems, it is always a good idea to see your dentist sooner rather than later.

You need to see a dentist if you have pain that: 

  • It lasts more than 2 days
  • Is not going away when you take painkillers
  • And is accompanied by a fever, pain while chewing or swallowing or red/swollen gums

Know who to call

You first need to know who to call and where to go. The first thing to do would be to call your dentist. They can advise you on what to do or book an emergency appointment. More often than not, a patient in pain will find that he/she can be seen on the same day the phone call is made to the dental clinic or, in a worst-case scenario, the day after for an emergency appointment. If you do not have a dentist or cannot get an emergency appointment, NHS 111 should be your next call for further advice about how severe your symptoms are and what is necessary to treat them. They will also advise you on how to deal with your pain and give you further information on what services will be available to you and where you can go to get treatment.

Salt water rinse

Until you get to the dentist, one possible home remedy is to gargle your mouth with salt water. The salt helps to remove bacteria from the mouth and can also reduce swelling. A good mix would be to use a teaspoon of salt to 8 ounces of water. Be careful to spit it out and not swallow the water; it really doesn’t taste nice. Sometimes, having cold liquid in the mouth on its own might help, and other times, it might flare the pain.

Pain killers

Over-the-counter medications such as Paracetamol and Ibuprofen can ease the pain that is affecting you and relieve minor pain from toothache. Be careful to use these forms of painkillers as they are meant. They are only to be taken orally, not to be applied directly to the gums, as it can cause more harm to your gums.

Cold compress

Do not underestimate the power of a cold compress. If your face is swollen, putting an ice pack on your cheek would be helpful. It may help ease the pain and almost act as a numbing agent for a while, which will help reduce the pain and swelling.

Apply pain-relieving gels and liquids

You can get these pain-relieving products from many pharmacies and supermarkets. Apply these gels and liquids directly to the sore tooth and nearby gums. Many of these contain benzocaine, which will numb your mouth for a while. Beware, these are meant for short-term use only. They will not treat the cause of your pain.

After experiencing the discomfort of a toothache, the last thing you want is to experience it again. The good news is that many toothaches are preventable if you care for your teeth and gums by flossing and brushing twice daily. Keeping up with your regular dental checkups will also ensure the best health of your teeth and gums.