Toothache and Gum Problems - Home Treatment
To reduce sensitivity to heat,
cold, or brushing, consider using a toothpaste specifically designed for
sensitive teeth. Brush with it regularly or rub a small amount of the paste on
the sensitive area with your finger 2 or 3 times a day. Floss gently between
To reduce pain and swelling of a
toothache, use an
ice pack on the outside of your cheek; do not use heat. Avoid very hot,
cold, or sweet foods and drinks if they increase your pain.
For short-term relief, adults can apply an over-the-counter benzocaine gel to the tooth. Be safe with medicine. Read and follow all instructions on the label . If your pain lasts longer than a few days or it gets worse, call a doctor.
Medicine you can buy without a prescription
| Try a nonprescription
medicine to help treat your fever or pain:|
Talk to your child's doctor before switching back and
forth between doses of acetaminophen and ibuprofen. When you switch between two
medicines, there is a chance your child will get too much medicine.
| Be sure to follow these
safety tips when you use a nonprescription medicine:|
- Carefully read and follow all directions
on the medicine bottle and box.
- Do not take more than the
- Do not take a medicine if you have had an
allergic reaction to it in the past.
you have been told to avoid a medicine, call your doctor before you take
- If you are or could be pregnant, do not take any medicine other
than acetaminophen unless your doctor has told you to.
If your gums
are mildly swollen and red, use a tartar-control toothpaste that contains
fluoride and also use a mouthwash that
contains fluoride. Make sure you brush after meals and snacks and floss every
day. If you cannot brush after eating, chew sugar-free gum, use a tooth pick,
or rinse your mouth with
warm salt water. You can make your own salt water by
mixing 1 tsp (5 g) of salt in a medium-sized glass [8 fl oz (240 mL)] of warm water.
Tobacco can cause many gum problems, decreases your
ability to fight infection of your gums, and delays healing. Do not smoke or
use other tobacco products. For more information, see the topic
Do not use illegal
drugs, such as methamphetamines, which cause tooth and gum problems.
Symptoms to watch for during home treatment
Call your doctor if any of the following occur during home
- Signs of infection develop.
- Gum or tooth problems last for more than 2 weeks.
- Symptoms persist or become more severe or