12 Natural Home Remedies for Toothaches
Try a Toothache Home Remedy Using Natural Herbs, Essential Oils or Herbal Teas
In my experience, a toothache can pop up when you least expect it or when it’s most inconvenient. That’s why having a few options for home remedies for toothaches can come in handy. A toothache can be some of the worst pain you’ll ever have to endure. When you have to wait to see the dentist, you’ll be happy to have something to help make you or someone in your family more comfortable by relieving the pain of a toothache.
A toothache can be caused by many things: gum disease where the gums become inflamed and/or infected; a cavity that has reached the pulp, nerve, or root of the tooth; a broken tooth; or an infection inside the tooth usually from bacteria that has slipped in through cracks around an old filling. If you’re suffering from a toothache, always make sure you make an appointment to see a dental care provider as soon as possible. Meanwhile, you can try one of these home remedies for toothaches that really work.
Home Remedies for Toothaches: Fresh Herbs
Fresh herbs are great home remedies for toothaches, and if you are growing herbs indoors or outdoors, you’ll have something handy to help relieve the pain and discomfort.
To use fresh herbs as home remedies for toothaches, pick a large clump of leaves. Chew them in your mouth to macerate and mash them, and then apply them to the painful area near or on the tooth. As a bonus, some of the items on this healing herbs list also have antibacterial properties, so they can help fight an infection if that’s what is causing your toothache.
Oregano: Oregano, a member of the mint family, is mostly known as a great seasoning for Italian food. Little did we know that fresh oregano leaves are great for relieving the pain of a toothache! Oregano also has antibacterial properties, so this is one of the herbs to use if your toothache is caused by an infection.
Peppermint: Of all the peppermint plant uses that I know of, I was surprised to find out how effective it is as one of my home remedies for toothaches. If you’re feeling the symptoms of an upset stomach in addition to the pain of a toothache, chewing on a few peppermint leaves will help both.
Plantain: Common plantain (Plantago major) is found pretty much everywhere here in the Adirondacks. It’s useful for bee stings, wasp stings, and other insect bites, relieves bronchitis and asthma, and is effective for treating skin infections and irritations. Best of all, macerating a couple of plantain leaves and holding the mash on or near your toothache will provide relief of the pain of a toothache.
Garlic: One of the reasons we continue growing garlic in our gardens year after year is for all of its healing uses. (Remember, as delicious as it may be, in Ayurveda garlic is considered medicine, not an ingredient for daily consumption!) Garlic can also help relieve the pain of a toothache. Take one or two cloves, smash it gently to break it apart, and apply the smashed cloves on or near the affected tooth.
Home Remedies for Toothaches: Essential Oils
Essential oils are also effective home remedies for toothaches. If you have a large apothecary of essential oils, you’ll find a couple of them that are highly effective home remedies for toothaches. To use an essential oil, place a few drops on a cotton swab, and then place the swab on or near the affected tooth, or on the gums near the affected tooth.
Oregano oil: Just like the fresh leaves, oregano essential oil can be effective for relieving the pain of a toothache.
Clove oil: Take caution when using clove oil, as too much can be toxic for some people. Clove oil is one of the oldest home remedies for toothaches that I know of — my grandparents told me that their grandparents used it on them when they were children!
Tea tree oil: In the early days of modern surgery and dental procedures, tea tree oil was used widely to disinfect and clean wounds. A few drops of tea tree oil on a cotton swab also has analgesic properties for relieving the pain of a toothache.
Home Remedies for Toothaches: Teas and Mouth Rinses
Herbal teas and simple mouth rinses can also help fight infections and relieve pain when used as home remedies for toothaches. When it comes to using herbal teas as home remedies for toothaches, take a mouthful of tea and swish it around your mouth, focusing on the painful area, before spitting it out.
Peppermint tea: Make a simple tea out of fresh peppermint leaves (about two tablespoons of leaves to three cups of water) by pouring hot, not boiling, water over the leaves. Allow the peppermint leaves to steep for at least 20 minutes before using.
Salt mouth rinse: Using sea salt or pink Himalayan salt to make a mouth rinse is another good home remedy for toothaches. Mix two to three tablespoons of salt in two cups of warm water and stir until dissolved. Swish mouthfuls of the salt rinse throughout the mouth, focusing on the painful areas, before spitting out. Allow some of the salt mouth rinse to remain in the mouth for a few minutes before rinsing with clear water. You can also use baking soda to make a mouth rinse to help relieve the pain of a toothache.
Tea bags: Make a cup of tea using a regular tea bag, and then place the tea bag on or as close to the affected tooth as possible. Be careful not to tear the tea bag. The naturally occurring tannins in the tea leaves also have pain-relieving properties that can help numb the area.
Home Remedies for Toothaches: Common Sense Remedies
There are a couple of common sense home remedies for toothaches that I use when needed.
Ice or heat: Depending on what’s causing your tooth pain, a simple ice pack or warm (not hot) pack can help relieve the pain. Tooth pain caused by nerve irritation responds well to a warm pack placed on the cheek near the sensitive tooth, and for tooth pain caused by infection or a deep cavity, an ice pack can provide pain relief by numbing the area. Take care to remove both ice and heat after 20 minutes to avoid burning your cheek.
Toothpaste for sensitive teeth: Obviously, you don’t want to stop brushing your teeth while you’re suffering from a toothache, so switch to a toothpaste designed for sensitive teeth. If you can’t find one that you like, use a good DIY baking soda toothpaste recipe. A bonus is that brushing with baking soda toothpaste not only cleans your teeth effectively, it also can help relieve the pain and discomfort of a toothache.
Obviously, you want to make sure that you seek dental care as soon as possible to treat the cause of the toothache and not just mask the symptoms.
Do you have any great home remedies for toothaches that you’d like to share with us here? Leave a comment and let us know how you treat the pain and discomfort of a toothache at home.
Originally published in 2016 and regularly vetted for accuracy.