The Essential Oils to Turn to When You Get a Toothache

Photo: Getty Images/SanneBerg
Reporting live with your daily dose of essential oils news: While we know that essential oils for PMS symptoms are a thing, as are EOs for itching, and headaches, some people are tapping the powers of essential oils to alleviate nagging toothaches.

When you're dealing with a toothache, you know it. You feel that deep-seated pain around a tooth that makes it hard to focus on anything else in your life. Now, it's important to note that if you're experiencing any symptoms like these, you should check in with your dentist, because essential oils aren't a longterm solve. However, some people believe that they could provide moderate relief for some types of toothaches.

"Essential oils can be an all-natural and effective alternative to various oral concerns and to support overall oral health," says Damian Rodriguez, DHSc, MS, health and exercise scientist for doTerra essential oils. Of course, it's important to remember to be careful when using these powerful plant extracts. "There are always risks of an adverse reaction when applying any substance topically, especially inside the mouth," he says. "To minimize risk, always follow recommended guidelines, including minimizing total usage—two to three drops directly on the affected area—and diluting when necessary."

If you're ready to give the oils a go, though, keep scrolling for the essential oils for toothache pain to try out.

Clove: Clove is a fragrant spice packed with loads of benefits, but as an essential oil, it has some perks for those pearly whites. "Clove essential oil has a long history of use for various oral health concerns and modern scientific research has begun to discover why," says Rodriguez. "Clove is a common ingredient in toothpastes, mouthwashes, and other oral care products because experimental research suggests that eugenol, the primary chemical constituent of clove, has a number of different properties which lend to its ability to address oral health." These properties are the fact that it can promote proper inflammatory response, be soothing, and it has cleansing abilities that are particularly beneficial to the mouth, gums, and teeth, he notes. To use it for your toothache, Rodriguez recommends adding two to three drops of clove essential oil to a cotton ball or swap and apply it directly to the affected area.

Fennel: You know fennel as a delish and healthy salad ingredient, but as an essential oil, it's some powerful stuff. The scent is kind of like licorice, and is great for digestive health. But pros say that it can also be incorporated into your oral hygiene routine if you're dealing with a toothache. "Fennel has some pain-relieving properties, and it's not so super harsh on the gums as peppermint is," says Amy Galper, a board-certified aromatherapist and founder of the New York Institute of Aromatic Studies. To use it for a toothache, use it in the same way as you would with clove by adding a couple of drops to a cotton swap and applying to the place that's in pain.

Peppermint & eucalyptus mouthwash: Galper says that mouthwashes using essential oils can be helpful for a toothache, since some oils themselves can be too potent to apply directly to your gums. One of her recipes is two tablespoons of distilled water, and a drop of the following essential oils: peppermint, eucalyptus, cinnamon leaf, marjoram, and thyme. "Peppermint, eucalyptus, and marjoram are anti-inflammatory," says Galper. All of them are antibacterial and antimicrobial, which is good for an infection, she notes, adding that the peppermint is good for a numbing and cooling effect. Just swish it around your mouth like you would with a regular mouthwash.

Fennel & cinnamon mouthwash: You can also utilize the anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antimicrobial powers of fennel and clove in a DIY mouthwash to help alleviate a toothache. Galper's other mouthwash recipe includes two tablespoons of distilled water (which is equivalent to one ounce of distilled water), and a drop of each of the following essentials: fennel, clove, peppermint, and cinnamon leaf. "Fennel is good for circulation, cleansing, and pain relief," she says. "And clove can be numbing." Swish the mouthwash around your mouth, holding it on the area of the toothache for a longer amount of time, and spit.

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