A toothache can be caused by a number of issues, such as gum disease, cracked tooth, an abnormal bite, grinding of your teeth. This article is going to focus on toothache caused by tooth decay, as that is the most common root cause.
The tooth is made up of four layers, and that is the enamel, dentin, cementum, and the pulp. Enamel is the strongest substance in the human body and is very much mineralized and brittle making up the outside of the tooth.
Underneath the enamel is dentin, a more flexible supporting tissue that is softer than the enamel. Under the dentin is cementum, which is a bone-like substance that is very specialized and protects the root of a tooth.
It is softer than dentin and enamel, and its main function is to serve as a medium that the periodontal ligaments (specialized tissue that joins the tooth to the jaw bone) can attach to the tooth for firmness. We also have the pulp, the central part of the tooth filled with soft connective tissue that has a lot of blood vessels and nerves.
A cavity is as a result of bacteria in the mouth, and its reaction to sugars and starches. As bacteria break down the sugars and starches in the mouth, gummy plaque filled with acids form over the tooth. If left free, plaque can form tartar, which can’t be easily brushed away.
These acids eat away at the tooth enamel, and unless reversed will continue to eat away the tooth until pulp becomes infected. It is when the pulp is infected that a root canal becomes important in helping prevent the spread of infection and an abscess.
Home Remedies for Toothache Relief
Cloves contain a substance called eugenol, this substance is a powerful antiseptic and anesthetic. Cloves were been used by dentists well before the advent of modern dentistry. Eugenol, in an extracted purified form, is still in use today.
Cloves are swabbed on gums to numb the area before administering Novocain or lidocaine. Cloves acts on certain pain receptors, blocking them and thus stopping the sensation of pain.
Rinse your mouth with warm salt water to get it nicely flushed out. Put in a few drops of clove essential oil with ½ teaspoon of olive oil and mix. Thoroughly steep a cotton ball in this mixture and then hold it gently but firmly against the affected tooth or gum or If you wanted you can take a shortcut by putting some of the oil on a cotton swab and dabbing it directly at the affected tooth, however, prodding a cotton swab onto an aching tooth or gum may not be too comfortable.
Rinse with Saltwater
Bacteria found in the mouth feed off on sugars in the diet called sucrose. When these bacteria break down the sugar, it produces lactic acid. This lactic acid eats away at the enamel and into the dentin thereby infecting the pulp.
This infection can spread and turn into an abscess or an inflammation. Salt, however, helps to neutralize the lactic acid and slows down the process of decay significantly. This also helps relieve pain. Warm salt water will also help contract swollen tissues as it draws excess fluid out of them, further relieving discomfort.
Add a teaspoon of salt in a cup and pour in a clean boiled water. Swish it around for about 30 seconds before spitting it out. The Saltwater cleanses the area around the tooth and draws out some of the fluid that causes inflammation. Repeat this treatment as often needed.
Peppermint essential oil helps in numbing tooth pain.it contains menthol, which is a major constituent in peppermint. A type of molecule called ligand that is present in the menthol, fastens itself to a protein known as the k-opioid receptor (KOR.)
K-opioid receptor is one of the four receptors that bind opiate-like compounds in the brain and control the effects of those compounds. One of this effects is the perception of pain. K-opioid receptor agonists are analgesic.
Menthol is a K-opioid receptor agonist, naturally occurring in mint, which is what makes it such an effective pain reliever. Adding to this, it can help desensitize a region through TRPM8, (known as the cold menthol receptor).
Menthol does not actually alter the temperature, but the activation of the TRPM8 simply deceives the brain into registering a cold sensation.
Mix 10-15 droplets of peppermint essential oil into 2 tablespoons of neutral oil to Dilute(this is important to avoid any irritation) Steep a cotton ball in the oil and pack it around the sore tooth, or soak a cotton swab and swab the gum surrounding the affected tooth. Repeat as needed until relieve is obtained.
Mix equal parts of these two heat-packing spices with sufficient water to make a paste. Dab a small ball of cotton into enough paste to saturate it, then put it on your tooth while avoiding your gums and tongue.
Leave it until the pain declines or as long as you can bear it (the mixture is likely to burn). You can also use this spices separately, as both are effective painkillers. The main chemical constituent of cayenne capsaicin (which has tons of health importance) has been found to help stop pain signal from reaching the brain.
Put a small ice cube in a plastic bag, wrap a thin fabric around the bag, and apply it to the painful tooth for about 15 minutes to numb the nerves. Or you can the ice pack on your cheek, over the painful tooth. Also, according to folklore, if you massage your hand with an ice cube, you can help relieve a toothache.
Wash it with myrrh
You can also wash with a tincture of myrrh. The astringent effects help with swelling. Myrrh is also known for killing bacteria.
Stir a teaspoon of powdered myrrh in 2 cups water for up to 30 minutes. Strain and let it cool. Wash with a teaspoon of the solution in a half filled cup of water for five to six times a day
For conditions other than dental and jaw problems, prompt diagnosis and treatment usually will improve the long-term outcome of these conditions.