top of page

6 Home Remedies On How to Stop A Toothache

Updated: Sep 30, 2022

These are real home remedies on how to stop a toothache fast. It is not eat a bulb of raw garlic and all of the pain will go away. If only that worked.

Young girl having a toothache
Young girl having a toothache

If you've ever experienced a toothache before, your number one priority would be getting some relief because a bad toothache will upend your entire day. We're not here to judge you because sometimes life happens and you are simply unable to make it back to your dentist in long island city. For instance:

  • You are on vacation and medical tourism wasn't what you had in mind.

  • You just moved into long island city and you haven't established a dental home yet.

  • Your work schedule is packed and your next availability would be next week.

  • Your dentist doesn't have an opening until five days later.

Since it seems like you won't be able to get an appointment, here are 6 home remedies that you can try at home for toothache relief.

  • Taking an over the counter pain medication such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or acetaminophen (Tylenol).

  • Brushing your teeth and flossing your teeth more often such as after every meal.

  • Mouth rinsing with coconut oil pulling

  • Using a hydroxyapatite toothpaste

  • Temporary tooth glue

  • Temporary tooth filling

All 6 of these are home remedies that you can do to achieve some relief from your toothache. All of the products are easily accessible online or at your local pharmacy but you shouldn't just blindly start using whatever you can find. Each method is specific for a certain tooth condition.

As our dental school professor would say, the treatment has to match the diagnosis.

The first thing you need to do is determine what is the cause of the toothache, at least to the best of your ability so that you can apply the right type of treatment for relief. Otherwise you won't be able to stop the tooth pain.

Temporary tooth filling

  • You can easily purchase a temporary filling for a tooth at your pharmacy.

  • This would be used if your cavity filling broke or if it fell out.

  • You will be experiencing very bad teeth sensitivity because the tooth is exposed.

  • The purpose of the temporary tooth filling is to cover up the exposed areas.

  • The material is like play dough and all you have to do is squish it into the cavity so you can do this temporary tooth filling at home.

  • If you want to make your own, unfortunately there is no material for you to make your own homemade temporary filling.

Temporary tooth glue

  • This product is also widely available in stores.

  • You should use this if your porcelain crown fell off.

  • The key to using the temporary tooth glue is to use only a very thin layer. Sometimes if you put too much glue, the tooth cap won't fit back in! Less is more in this case, a thin homogeneous layer of tooth glue would be perfect.

  • Before you glue in the porcelain crown, make sure you try it in a few times so that you know the correct orientation it is suppose to go back in.

Hydroxyapatite toothpaste

  • This is a newer product that has come onto the market but it is very effective because it creates an extra layer of apatite on top of your tooth.

  • This new layer is essentially the same as your tooth so it offers an additional layer of protection.

  • Very effective for blocking out temperature sensitivities or any type of tooth sensitivity that you have no idea where it is coming from.

  • The newly created layer is also resistant to tooth brushing so it won't wear away.

  • We would say, if you are having bad sensitivity to cold fluids, this method will give you some relief for your tooth pain.

Coconut oil pulling

  • Everyone has coconut oil! If you don't, you can just purchase it at your market.

  • Use this method if you are getting a lot of gum pain from gum bleeding or swollen gums.

  • What you do is rinse your mouth with a tablespoon of coconut oil for about 15-20 mins. Do it a couple of times a day if needed.

  • How coconut oil pulling works is that it is at a pH of around 7-8 while bacteria work the most effectively at a pH of 5.5 or below so it acts as a buffer. It brings the pH back up so it inhibits bacterial activity. It will also mechanically remove food debris by the swishing.

  • We've seen patient's gums bleed a lot less after using this method so give it a try!

  • If you want an alternative oil to rinse with, you can try oregano oil, which has been shown to have strong antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Brushing and flossing more often

  • Sometimes you just get food or some type of foreign particle that may be lodged in between your teeth or your gums therefore causing you pain.

  • Brush and floss as many times as you can so that you can dislodge the stuck food.

  • A lot of times, if it has been stuck for awhile you will experience bleeding gums but that is all the more reason to keep it extra clean.

  • If you manage to dislodge the debris, the gum swelling will subside after 1-2 days.

Taking pain medication

  • Last but not least if you are having a bad toothache, you can always get some pain relief by taking some good old ibuprofen.

  • Depending on how bad it is, you can adjust the dosage for instance a very bad toothache you should take at least 800mg of ibuprofen every 8 hours.

  • For Tylenol you can take up to 1000mg every 8 hours.

  • Please remember that this may stop a toothache fast but it is still only a temporary measure because it does not address the root cause.

Hopefully you can stop your toothache at home with one of these ways. Remember, what can stop a toothache will depend on what is causing the tooth pain in the first place so please do your best to figure out the source. That way you can apply the most appropriate technique so that you can get some pain relief until you are able to get in to see your dentist.

These methods are all temporary, don't forget that! Temporary tooth fillings and temporary tooth glues are just that, temporary. They were not made to last forever. For the temporary tooth fillings, you will notice that they will slowly start to dissolve over the next few days! Also, why would you want your tooth cap to be temporarily glued in when it can be done with permanent tooth glue?

Alternatively, there are some more holistic remedies as well such as salt water rinses and peppermint tea bags.

Last but not least, we should address the 800 lb gorilla in the room.

How to stop a bad toothache

A bad toothache is completely different from your run of the mill tooth pain. This type of pain will be excruciating and will even prevent you from sleeping. You will wake up periodically in the middle of the night with this ache. If you are experiencing this, you most likely have a problem with the tooth nerve.

The only way to stop this toothache fast is to get either a root canal or have the tooth removed. Evidence for this is that even the pain management specialists, anesthesiologists, come to us in pain. They are able to make sure you don't feel a thing while undergoing surgery in the OR but they can't stop a bad toothache... Pain medication doesn't work for this!

So, yes sometimes you simply can't avoid the dentists and a home remedy just won't work... Then again it depends on what the source of the toothache is. If you can figure that out and apply the right technique, you will get some relief! If you need helping determining if it is a dental emergency, we have the guide for you.

However the best thing to do would be to see an emergency dentist.

David Chen 200 x 200.jpg

About the author: Dr David Chen, DDS

Hello, I'm Dr Chen and I'm an actively practicing dentist in Long Island City, NY. I graduated from Columbia University College of Dental Medicine in 2016 but prior to going to dental school I was already working in the dental field. It's been more than a decade since I first got to know dentistry and let me tell you, time flies by quickly. Since then I've developed a fondness for writing, which is how this all got started!

Association Memberships:

Medical Disclaimer:

This blog is purely meant for information purposes and should not be used as medical advice. Each situation in your mouth is unique and complex. It is not possible to give advice nor diagnose any oral conditions based on text nor virtual consultations. The best thing to do is to go in person to see your dentist for an examination and consultation so that you can receive the best care possible.

The purpose of all of this oral health information is to encourage you to see your dentist and to inform you of what you may expect during your visit. Due to the unfortunate nature of dentistry, there isn't really any true home remedies that will get rid of dental problems. Roughly 99.99% of them require in-person intervention by a healthcare professional.

Hint: That is the reason why you can't eliminate seeing dentists in your life!

bottom of page