Having a toothache is not only painful but stressful as well. And even more so if you get one while you’re self-isolating for COVID-19. In this situation, the first thing you should do is call an emergency dentist to schedule the first available appointment. From there, you’ll want to relieve your pain until you can be treated. Since everyone is trying to minimize their trips to the store right now, try using one of the 5 home remedies below (most of which you probably have in your pantry or medicine cabinet.)
1. Over-the-Counter Pain Medication
When you have a toothache, ibuprofen, naproxen, or acetaminophen are all examples of OTC pain medication that can help you stay more comfortable. That said, keep in mind that it’s still very important to be seen by a dentist, even if your pain goes away. Some toothaches are accompanied by an abscess or infection that can spread to other areas and become very dangerous if not treated.
To reduce the pain and inflammation from a toothache, gently hold a cold compress or ice pack to the outside of your lip or cheek for 10-15 minutes at a time.
Mix up a saltwater solution by dissolving ¼ teaspoon of salt in a glass of lukewarm water. Swish for around 30 seconds at a time (as often as needed) to soothe pain and reduce inflammation.
4. Peppermint Tea
Peppermint contains menthol which has mild analgesic (numbing) effects. You can either hold a wet, lukewarm peppermint tea bag on the tooth itself or just swish with lukewarm peppermint tea a few times.
Clove contains a compound called eugenol that’s not only antibacterial and anti-inflammatory but also numbs pain.
If you happen to have clove oil, use a very small amount as it’s very powerful (just 1-2 drops in a glass of lukewarm water is plenty). You can either dab that solution around your tooth with a cotton swab or swish and spit. You can also use whole cloves by grinding them and soaking them in water to make a paste. Then apply a small amount to your tooth for 10-15 minutes and rinse.
Fortunately, emergency dentists are still open during COVID-19. And by using one (or a combination) of these 5 home remedies, you’ll be able to manage your pain without making a trip to the store.
About the Author
As an experienced general and emergency dentist, Dr. Joanne Bancroft wants to make sure her patients are taken care of during the COVID-19 crisis. She’s still open for emergency care and is always available to provide advice or information over the phone as well. If you’re dealing with a toothache or have any questions, she can be reached via her website.