What Causes Toothaches and What Can You Do to Stop the Pain?

what causes toothaches

There’s nothing worse than a toothache. The throbbing pain. The sensitivity. And the headache that usually comes along for the ride. But what causes toothaches? What can you do to stop the pain?

Common Toothache Causes

Toothaches, while painful in their own right, are often a sign of something more serious. Most toothaches should not be ignored, particularly when you are not sure what has caused it. While some may be caused by sensitivity issues, if you are unsure why your tooth is aching, you should see a dentist as soon as possible. Some of the more common toothache causes are:


  • Tooth Decay – When bacteria penetrate your tooth’s enamel, cavities result. These bacteria also can cause nerve pain, leading to throbbing toothaches.


  • Gum Disease – Occasionally, a toothache is not caused by the tooth, but rather by the gums. Gum disease is caused when bacteria build up in your gums.


  • Cracked Teeth – Cracked or broken teeth are a common cause of tooth pain. Cracked teeth require dental repairs, as the nerve may be exposed.


  • Infection – Toothache may be a symptom of severe dental infections. An infection, also known as a dental abscess, occurs when bacteria have burrowed deep within the tooth. Abscesses are commonly painful and involve swelling of the gums or jaw. In addition, abscesses can affect other parts of your body – including your heart. If you have an abscess you should visit a dentist immediately.

What to Do for a Toothache

Now that you know some of the most common causes of your toothaches, what can you do to alleviate the pain? Obviously, the first step is to get an appointment with your dentist, but while you wait, here are some of the best ways to soothe tooth pain:

Salt Water Rinse

Salt water is a great, natural way to reduce mouth pain and swelling. Rinsing with salt water will help remove any debris near the tooth in question and can help clean out the bacteria.

Clove Oil

Clove oil, while not pleasant in taste or odor, is a well-known and effective remedy for toothaches. Clove oil contains a natural anesthetic, known as Eugenol. Simply dab a little of the oil on a cotton ball or Q-tip and apply it to the affected tooth to temporarily relieve the pain and discomfort.

Tea Bags

Warm tea bags are a classic folk cure for toothache pain. Black tea contains tannins, which have an astringent quality, which makes them great for reducing swelling due to tooth pain.

Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen Peroxide, like a salt water rinse, is commonly used to clean infected areas in the mouth. Hydrogen peroxide, however, is much more effective, as it kills bacteria, rather than simply washing it away.

See a Dentist As Soon As Possible

While the remedies mentioned above are a great way to help alleviate the pain and swelling associated with toothaches, they are no substitute for visiting your dentist as soon as your tooth pain begins. These remedies are only a temporary solution. Only an experienced dentist can properly diagnose and treat an infected or broken tooth.

Toothaches are painful. Visiting a dentist shouldn’t be. At Florida Dental Solutions, we strive to make getting dental work done a pleasant experience. We specialize in providing our clients with comprehensive dental care at affordable prices. If you are looking to say goodbye to tooth pain, give us a call today at 954-362-4102.

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