How to Stop Tooth Nerve Pain Naturally

Nothing keeps your mood down and sour than a sharp, throbbing pain in your mouth as you try to engage in your daily activities like eating, talking, brushing, or just going through your day.

Sometimes, this ache might be a dull pain that refuses to go away, leaving you in a state of malaise. Any sensation that causes discomfort to your teeth and the rest of your mouth is referred to as tooth nerve pain.

Tooth Nerves

Embedded in the roots of the teeth, is the dental pulp which contains thousands of nerves, connective tissue, and blood vessels which supply nutrients to the teeth.

The only function played by the nerves of the teeth is the sensory function. Occasionally when these nerves get irritated or infected, it may predispose an individual to tooth nerve pain and infection.

Tooth Sensitivity

Chewing can heighten sensitivity and discomfort when the dentin in the teeth is exposed which can also cause gum pain. The dentin is a yellow-brown colored mineral in the teeth, enriched with tubules that are directly linked to the never pulp.

Just above the gumline, is the enamel and just below the gumline is the cementum. These two structures which envelope the gumline are responsible for the protection of the dentin. When the protective layers that protect the teeth get worn out, particles can penetrate the tubules and migrate to the tooth nerves eliciting a response which is the stabbing pain known as “tooth nerve pain.”

This condition occurs as a result of pain and possible infection around the nerves of a tooth. Tooth nerves differ from the dentin, cementum, and enamel, in the sense that they are sensitive to external stimuli. 

This is good news because they alert us when our teeth get inflamed; the bad news is that this alert most times comes with unbearable pains. This nerve pain can either be pulpal sensitivity or dentinal sensitivity.

Pulpal Sensitivity

This type of tooth nerve pain occurs with just one tooth. Damage to the pulp of the teeth causes bacteria to break down and multiply. Furthermore, the bacteria cells and other decomposing matter can then lead to an abscess in the affected area, infection, gum disease, and potentially even a dead tooth.

The pus-filled abscess usually forms at the root of the tooth. In most cases when this occurs, the problem might be as a result of an affected tooth pulp. The factors that can predispose an individual to this particular condition include:

  • ​Tooth decay
  • ​A brokenchipped or cracked tooth
  • ​Tooth filling
  • Infections
  • The pressure exerted by grinding/clenching your teeth (also referred to as bruxism)
  • Smoking
A woman holding her cheek to stop tooth nerve pain

Dental Sensitivity

When the pain in the dental area emerges from just one tooth, it is said that nerve pain is as a result of dental sensitivity. This is usually caused by damage of the enamel of the teeth or introduction by external stimuli like acid, cold or heat, which find their way to the nerve roots of the tooth’s dentin layer. The main causes of dental sensitivity are:

  • ​Constant use of teeth whiteners
  • ​Infected cavities which have been left untreated
  • ​Hard brushing of teeth
  • Gum surgery
  • Receding gums

Symptoms

The major symptoms of tooth nerve pain include persistent, intense pain, swelling of gums, pressure, and sensitivity to stimuli. Difficulty in chewing and speaking can also be experienced.

Tooth Nerve Pain Relief

To alleviate every form of tooth nerve pain, there are some life modification habits that you must imbibe.

  • ​Stop consuming food types that can destroy the enamel of your teeth.
  • ​Brush gently and ensure to use a toothbrush that is soft-bristled when you brush.
  • ​Gargle with warm salt water: Wash your mouth with salt water twice or three times a day. Saltwater serves as an antiseptic which helps to breakdown bacteria around the infected dentin.
  • Elevate your head while sleeping: An inflamed nerve around your tooth can be quite a pain in the neck—literally. Sleeping peacefully can seem quite uncomfortable; it might really help to elevate your head while sleeping to reduce pressure.
  • Use an over-the-counter dental anesthetic: OTC dental anesthetics like Anbesol or Orajel available at the shelves of many pharmacies come in handy when you need to ease the pain.
  • Use of eugenol: Eugenol, also known as clove oil, is very popular in health stores. The anesthetic is one of the natural ones that have been tried and tested for over 100 years.
  • Flossing: Always ensure to floss your teeth to eliminate plaque and food particles that have been trapped. Floss comes with a sticky film that helps coat your teeth and reduce pain.
  • Curb your intake of fizzy and alcoholic drinks like soda, yogurt, and citrus juice.
  • The first step to take when you notice these symptoms are to make a quick trip to your dentist—this is to prevent further destruction occurring to the gums and teeth.

To ease your pain, you can go for an over-the-counter (OTC) medication like Tylenol or Ibuprofen. It is advisable to avoid medications like aspirin which can limit the rate at which blood clots.

Professional Treatment

If all other methods of reducing the pain fail, it may be time you visit your dentist for some professional advice and treatment. The dentist will conduct an assessment on the infected tooth and fix it if the situation can be salvaged.

In cases when permanent damage has occurred, extraction of the inflamed tooth will be the best option. The procedure of treating injuries to dental pulp is commonly known as endodontic treatment.

Prevention Is Better Than Cure

After going through the pain of fixing a bad tooth, no one would ever want to relive that pain. This is why it is imperative to adopt certain habits that will help prevent such from reoccurring. Some habits to stop include:

  • ​Any form of trauma to the mouth
  • ​Biting on very hard objects like pencils
  • ​Chewing hard food substances like nuts

Tooth nerve pain gets worse the more you wait. It is important to swing into full action the moment you notice that something is amiss. Visit your dentist immediately, otherwise, the pain will increase in more folds and your teeth will suffer from the repercussions.