1. Toothaches are no fun, and the best answer is to see your dentist as quickly as possible. While you wait there are a few options that may help: Brush and floss as thoroughly as possible. Sometimes the pain is caused by something lodged between teeth or hung up in a cavity. Rinse with warm salt water. This will help keep the painful tooth clean. A folk remedy often listed in old herbals is to tie 1/4 teaspoon of ground cloves in a cloth and hold it on the painful area. If the problem is a loose or missing filling, purchase one of the little tooth repair kits from your local pharmacy and use the contents to create a temporary filling till you can see your dentist. Purchase a tube of numbing cream (the kind used on babies gums when they are teething) for temporary relief. Rub a little of it on the painful gum area. Place an aspirin on the tooth, and hold it there. It tastes weird, but it will dissolve slowly putting its pain-relieving properties to work where it is needed most. Keep mouth closed, breathing through your nose. Mouth breathing can pull cold air over the tooth causing added pain. Avoid extremely hot or cold foods as these can cause the pain to increase. If it is an upper tooth, sometimes the infection will spread into the sinus cavities making them ache as well as the tooth itself. In this case, use an aromatic ointment or item that will help loosen the phlegm, thus easing the painful pressure. Avoid sugar, chewing gum, or tough cuts of meat. Stick to soft foods that can be eaten easily till after you see the dentist. If the pain is too severe for topical pain relievers to take care of the problem, take an over-the-counter analgesic (aspirin, ibuprofen or aleve) according to package directions. Be very careful not to exceed the recommended dose. If you are taking prescription medicines, call your doctor before taking over-the-counter meds. (Also be sure to let your dentist know if you are taking prescription medicines, as well as letting him know if you are using over-the-counter pain relievers.) Some sources recommend using whiskey or rum as a mouthwash. An elderly neighbor I once had, swore that holding a chew of tobacco on the tooth deadened the pain. This last seemed to me a case of the cure being worse than the original condition, so I didn’t try it. I did find that holding a hot compress or heating pad on the face near the painful area seemed to bring some relief. Hot water bottles are even better because they exude a moist heat. Sipping tepid chamomile tea and holding it in your mouth on the tooth can sometimes help. Be careful not to mix too many remedies.  Always keep in mind that pain is the body’s way of signaling that there is a problem that needs attention. A painful tooth is one of those things that will continue to get worse till it is cared for properly. Once again, the best way to handle it is to see your dentist as quickly as possible.

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