A toothache can have many causes -- cavities, a tooth abscess, gum disease, tooth fracture or exposed roots. A toothache can also be a symptom of other conditions, such as a heart attack, an ear infection or sinusitis. Home remedies for alleviating a toothache provide immediate but temporary relief. Finding and treating the source of the pain will ensure long-lasting relief and prevention of more serious issues.
Avoid foods and beverages with extreme hot or cold temperatures, if your toothache is due to sensitivity from an exposed root. Exposed roots no longer protected by gums or enamel react to extreme temperatures and trigger pain. Sour foods can also irritate exposed roots.
Eat only soft or semi-soft foods, in case your toothache is due to a cracked tooth. A tooth can break or fracture if you bite down on hard foods, such as nuts or hard candies, at the wrong angle.
Apply an over-the-counter topical oral analgesic gel or liquid directly to the tooth and surrounding gum for immediate relief.
Take an over-the-counter pain medication, such as aspirin or ibuprofen, for extended relief. To avoid further complications, take only the recommended dose and follow the dosing schedule.
Maintain good oral hygiene. Bacteria and foodstuffs left in and around the painful tooth can accelerate dental pain and complications. Floss, brush and rinse as per your usual routine, but be gentle around the affected area.
Seek medical care if your toothache is severe, lasts for more than two days, or if you have a fever or earache, according to MedlinePlus.