When dental pain strikes, it doesn't take long for life to feel uncomfortable. In worst-case scenarios, your pain might even feel intolerable. Before you rush to your nearest emergency dentist, it's worth seeing whether you can manage the pain until a routine appointment becomes available. Here's a quick step-by-step guide to doing so.
1. Take an Over-the-Counter Painkiller
Over-the-counter analgesia is often enough to manage mild to moderate dental pain. It gives you an opportunity to make yourself feel comfortable while you wait for a dental appointment during normal office hours.
One of the most popular choices of painkillers is paracetamol. However, you may find that Ibuprofen or aspirin is more effective at reducing your pain. Make sure you don't give aspirin to any child under the age of 16. If you're pregnant, seek advice before taking Ibuprofen or aspirin.
2. Rinse Your Mouth With Saltwater
Although saltwater mouth rinses are a little old-fashioned, they are also effective. To make the solution, boil a kettle and then allow the water to cool until it is comfortably warm. Add around a teaspoon of salt to a cup of warm water and stir it so it dilutes.
Once the mixture is ready, swill it around your mouth and focus it on the area where you're feeling pain. The salt in the solution will draw fluid away from the area where your pain is. As a result, it will reduce the pressure there and make your toothache more tolerable.
3. Apply a Numbing Gel
Numbing gels usually contain mild levels of benzocaine. As a form of topical anaesthetic that dentists often use, it's ideal for making your gums feel more comfortable in the area where an infection is present.
If you're trying to reduce dental pain in a child, make sure you ask a pharmacist for advice before choosing a numbing gel.
4. Try Cloves
If you're still struggling with pain despite using the steps above, try placing a clove between your cheek and the affected tooth. Cloves contain a natural numbing agent called eugenol. If you've never tried this method before, make sure you ask a dental professional for guidance first.
If your dental pain is severe or if you're experiencing swelling, you may need to use an emergency dentistry service. As your oral health is important, always seek advice if you're not sure whether you're dealing with an emergency or not. It's always better to be safe and err on the side of caution.