Nothing can ruin a day faster than the shooting pain of a toothache. When this occurs, you have a dental emergency on your hands, but it’s not always possible for you to receive immediate dental care. Therefore, it helps to know what over-the-counter (OTC) pain relief products can help to temporarily calm the discomfort. As you continue reading, your emergency dentist in Ellington provides some insight. But first, you’ll learn what the common causes of a toothache are.
The Common Contributors to a Toothache
In most cases, a toothache is brought on by acute oral bacteria growth. Typically, it’s the result of a problem that has been developing over time, in some cases, for years. As several types of bacteria form plaque, a clear, sticky substance that clings to the teeth and along the gum line, caustic fluids are released that can eventually cause cavities, tiny holes in the enamel. If they’re not addressed, they can work their way to the sensitive inner parts of the tooth where the canals and nerves are housed.
Still, there can be other contributors to a toothache, such as:
- Gum disease
- Tooth fracture
- Damaged filling
- Teeth grinding
- Vigorous brushing or flossing
No matter the cause, when there is tooth pain, it should never be ignored. By visiting your dentist, you can find out what the cause of the problem is and receive the care you need to restore your oral health to normal. In the meantime, you need to know what you can do at home to lessen the discomfort.
OTC Pain Relief Tips
Because you can’t always be seen immediately, let’s take a look at what you can do for temporary relief from a toothache:
- Ibuprofen – Two of the commonly known brands of ibuprofen are Advil and Motrin, which you can find at your local drugstore or grocer. To ease any pain, you can take up to 600 mg every six to eight hours.
- Orajel – Applying Orajel crème, which contains a compound called benzocaine, helps to sooth tooth and gum pain.
- Tylenol – To get the maximum pain relief, you can alternate Tylenol (acetaminophen) with ibuprofen.
Along with these OTC products, there are some steps you can take at home to further quiet the pain until you can visit your emergency dentist. They include keeping your head elevated, avoiding any acidic, cold or hard foods and rinsing your mouth with salt-water.
Why You Still Need to Visit Your Dentist
Because most toothaches are the result of acute oral bacteria growth, even if you experience some pain relief, it’s still important to visit your emergency dentist. That’s because bacteria won’t stop causing damage on their own. So to ensure that your toothache in Ellington doesn’t get worse, be sure to schedule a visit so you can have your oral health fully restored and your pain brought to an end.
About the Author
Dr. Warren Zahner is a graduate of the University of Connecticut School of Dental Medicine. Over the past 30 years, he has seen and treated his fair share of dental emergencies. Dr. Zahner helps his patients overcome toothaches at Zahner Dental, and he can be reached for more information through his website.