Suffering from toothaches or gum pain is definitely NOT a fun thing to experience! You won’t be able to eat, brush, or even talk properly at times, which is why I’m sure you want to get rid of the discomfort ASAP. However, it’s difficult to simply go to the dentist for some, not only because of fear but because of the budget! That’s why there are simple home remedies such as heat or ice for toothache and the like.
By using a hot or cold compress, it can either temporarily or permanently relieve the pain effectively! But how exactly does it work? Read on as I show you how using a hot or cold compress for toothache helps and how to apply it correctly.
How Does Heat Help With the Toothache?
“Hot compresses are much recommended and particularly effective when wanting to draw out infection.”
Besides increasing blood flow, it can also increase the rate of the dead bacteria and infection from spreading, which has the cells of your immune system take action to fight it off.
So hot compresses are much recommended and particularly effective when wanting to draw out infection. But take note that you should only use hot packs or compresses for infections but not for swollen gums and teeth. The heat may worsen the swelling and inflammation, especially when placing it directly on your jaw (make sure that the hot compress you use isn’t too hot).
How Does The Cold Help With Toothache?
“Some researchers also believe that placing ice on the pained area can also stop pain signals to the brain!”
If you have a toothache, you’ve probably heard a lot of people advise you to apply a cold compress. This is actually quite an effective remedy, but best mostly for dental pain or swelling. It’s known to reduce toothache pain from swollen gums or injuries.
The reason behind this is because applying cold packs on your pained area would constrict the blood vessels. The blood flow will slow down on the affected area (with the cold pack), numbing the pain. As a result, it reduces swelling and/or inflammation.
So if you knocked a tooth loose or chipped it, then consider applying a cold compress on the affected areas if it feels uncomfortable or painful. Some researchers also believe that placing ice on the pained area can also stop pain signals to the brain!
Besides using an ice pack, you can also use other alternatives to apply something cold to your teeth. Some people use a pack of frozen peas, while some use their fingers, rubbing ice on them and rubbing it in the affected area for a few minutes.
However, if the toothache is caused by deeper injuries such as an exposed nerve, then the cold might end up making the pain even worse. This is a remedy best used for temporary yet effective pain relief.
Now that you’re familiar with how the heat or cold for toothache works, how can you properly pull it off? While these remedies are highly effective, you need to do it safely to prevent any more discomfort. I’ll be showing you how to do both hot and cold compresses so you can choose what you prefer!
Using a Hot Compress
To use a hot compress, prepare the following items:
- Damp towel
- Ziploc bag
Follow these steps:
- Wet a towel as much as you can with clean water
- Once wet, fold it and put it inside the Ziploc bag (it should be microwaveable)
- Place the towel and bag inside your microwave, letting it heat up on medium heat for two to four minutes. The Ziploc bag should be unzipped while doing so!
- Once heated, remove the bag and press out the air before zipping and sealing it.
- Place it on the pained area of your teeth and repeat this two to four times a day.
Using a Cold Compress
When using a cold compress or an ice pack for toothache, make sure you have all these:
- Ice cubes
- Two Ziploc bags
Follow these steps:
- Place the ice cubes inside the Ziploc bag
- Add water, enough to cover the ice but not too much to prevent spillage
- Insert the ice-filled bag into the second Ziploc bag to prevent leaking
- Apply it to the pained area, only doing so 15 minutes at a time to prevent constricting your blood flow too much. Repeat four times a day until you experience pain relief
While these two remedies are highly effective and have been reported successful by many, they are NOT clinically-tested solutions. It may work for some, but it’s not the surefire way to remove the pain 100%.
These are just good remedies that allow you to reduce the pain temporarily if you’re unable to go to the dentist just yet. It beats using painkillers or spending a lot of money you can’t use just yet.
Additionally, it’s best to prevent that toothache with the proper teeth hygiene, such as:
- Brushing your teeth thoroughly twice a day
- Flossing after meals
- Avoiding hard hits and wearing teeth protection while playing sports
- Using mouthwash
- Routine dentist checkups
- Avoiding smoking, sweets, and foods that cause cavities
Wrapping It Up
Using heat or ice for tooth pain or gum problems helps provide relief temporarily. As long as you apply it correctly and continue healthier teeth hygiene, you can experience less pain and go about your day! But if the symptoms persist and begin to hurt too much, do head on to the dentist for a cure.
If you have any questions or want to share your experiences in applying a compress, heat or cold, for toothache, then comment below. Your thoughts are much appreciated!