According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, about 4.5 million adults in the U.S. suffer from at least one chronic abscessed tooth. If you’re currently grappling with this painful condition, you may be wondering what you can do to find relief—preferably without having to see a dentist.
10 Home Remedies to Help an Abscessed Tooth
While it’s always best to consult with a dental professional if you think you may have an abscessed tooth, there are some home remedies that may help ease your pain and discomfort until you’re able to get an appointment.
1. Rinse your mouth with salt water
One of the simplest and most effective ways to cleanse your mouth and reduce swelling is by rinsing with warm salt water several times a day. The salt helps draw out any pus and toxins while also reducing inflammation. To make the rinse, mix together 1 teaspoon of salt with 8 ounces of warm water. Swish the mixture around in your mouth for 30 seconds before spitting it out.
2. Apply a Cold Compress
Applying a cold compress to the outside of your cheek can help numb the pain and reduce swelling associated with an abscessed tooth. For best results, wrap ice in a thin cloth and hold it against your cheek for 10-15 minutes at a time. Repeat this as needed throughout the day but be sure not to put the ice directly on your skin as this could lead to frostbite.
3. Take Over-the-Counter Pain medication
If the pain associated with your abscessed tooth is severe, over-the-counter painkillers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help you find relief until you can get to a dentist. Be sure to follow the instructions on the labels carefully, as taking too much medication can cause serious health problems. If you have concerns about which medication is right for you, ask your pharmacist or doctor for guidance.
4. Rinse with hydrogen peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is a natural disinfectant that can help kill harmful bacteria in your mouth and promote healing. To use it as a rinse, mix together 1 cup of water with 1 tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide then swish the mixture around in your mouth for 30 seconds before spitting it out.
5. Club soda
Like hydrogen peroxide, club soda can also help kill bacteria and promote healing thanks to its high carbonation levels. To use it as a rinse, simply swish club soda around in your mouth for 30 seconds then spit it out. You can repeat this several times each day until your symptoms improve
6. See Your Dentist ASAP
While home remedies can provide temporary relief from the pain associated with an abscessed tooth, only professional dental cleaning can get rid of the infection completely.
7. Take Good Care of Your Teeth
Taking good care of your teeth is important not just for preventing cavities and gum disease but also for preventing abscesses
8. Seek Medical Attention If Your Face Begins to Swell
If you notice that your face is beginning to swell or if you have trouble breathing or swallowing, these could be signs of a serious medical emergency known as Ludwig’s angina
9. An Abscessed Tooth Is a Serious Condition—Don’t Ignore It
Abscesses don’t go away on their own—if you think you may have an abscessed tooth, it’s important to see a dentist as soon as possible
10. When in Doubt, Call Your Dentist
If you’re ever unsure whether or not you have an abscessed tooth or if home remedies aren’t providing relief, give your dentist a call
While home remedies may provide temporary relief from an abscessed tooth, it’s important to see a dentist as soon as possible so that they can properly diagnose and treat the infection before it spreads or becomes more severe. Home remedies are not meant to replace professional dental care but they may provide some relief while you wait for an appointment. If home remedies don’t provide relief or if symptoms begin to worsen, see your dentist right away or go to the emergency room
Disclaimer: This article is not meant to replace professional medical advice
Please see a doctor if experiencing severe symptoms
With proper care, most people recover from an abscessed tooth quickly and without complications Remember
An Abscess Is A Serious Condition – Don’t Ignore It!