How can I Treat Wisdom Tooth Pain?

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  • Written By: Holly Collins
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 07 November 2018
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Wisdom teeth are the upper and lower third molars, found in the back of the mouth. The name refers to their appearance in early adulthood as opposed to childhood, when most permanent teeth emerge. These four teeth usually appear sometime after the age of 17, when a person has acquired some knowledge or wisdom; thus the name. Not everyone gets four wisdom teeth, and many wisdom teeth never erupt or break through the gums. The most common treatment for wisdom tooth pain is extraction of the teeth.

The fact that these teeth frequently partially erupt, not coming all the way into place in the tooth line, is one of the reasons they can cause pain. Infection can occur when food gets trapped between a partially erupted wisdom tooth and the gum. Wisdom tooth pain is also common as the teeth are erupting or breaking through the gums.

Wisdom teeth that are painful are often infected. Removing these teeth can alleviate the infection, and subsequently, the pain. Over-the-counter analgesics are common for treatment of wisdom tooth pain. Narcotic drugs, such as codeine, hydrocodine, and oxycodne, are also sometimes prescribed.


Many home remedies exist for wisdom tooth pain treatment. Chewing garlic or onions is thought to be good for teeth. Garlic is said to make teeth strong and healthy, while chewing an onion for three minutes has been clinically shown to alleviate germs in the mouth. Placing a piece of onion on a painful wisdom tooth, or the surrounding gum, is an way to manage wisdom tooth discomfort and can help lessen the pain.

Cloves have been shown to reduce tooth pain as well as help with infection. Clove oil can be applied to the painful wisdom tooth and surrounding gum area. This oil can also be mixed with garlic and rock salt and applied to the tooth, where it can be a very effective wisdom tooth pain home remedy. Clove oil can also be used with a pinch of pepper powder and one quarter teaspoon of rock salt to make a paste to be applied directly to the painful tooth or gum.

Wisdom tooth pain can also be eased with wheat grass juice used as a mouth wash. The juice from wheat grass draws out toxins in the mouth, slowing or prohibiting bacterial growth. This helps reduce infection and consequently reduces pain.

The gentle massaging of the cheek and the application of ice to the jaw can also help manage wisdom tooth pain. Application of ice directly to the painful wisdom tooth is not recommended. Extreme temperature, both hot and cold, can aggravate tooth pain.

A reflexology-based treatment for wisdom tooth pain suggests that applying ice to the webbing between the thumb and forefinger to numb the area will dull the nerve path leading to the tooth ache, thus relieving the pain. Relaxation and deep breathing are also recommended for wisdom tooth pain management.


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Post 51

If you're open to it, I suggest looking up eft or tapping which involves acupressure as a form of relief or self hypnosis for pain relief. Both have helped me in my time of need.

Post 50

The only thing I know is to pull that out. I had mine out because I'm suffering from pain and it annoys my day. Well my dentist took good care of it as usual.

Post 49

The only thing I know is to pull that out. I had mine out because I'm suffering from pain and it annoys my day. Well my dentist of course from took good care of it as usual.

Post 48

In my experience, letting an aspirin melt/making a paste out of it and applying to affected area works best. only takes 10 minutes or so and there's no more pain. It lasts 10-12 hours for me.

In my case I used real aspirin, to be specific, Equate 325 mg tablets from Wal-Mart. A higher mg may be more effective, but I never tried because this always worked for me and did not taste too horrible.

Post 47

I'm fifteen and my upper right wisdom tooth area is bloody killing, literally. I've been chewing a toothbrush and now it's covered in blood and I've destroyed the brush. Oops. I'm really hurting.

Post 46

These home remedies for pain will do nothing. Come on: chewing an onion to stop blinding tooth pain? It's absurd! I'll share my home remedy with you: buy some benzocaine from the net. (It's dirt cheap.) Buy an insulin syringe. Inject a solution of benzocaine and water into the gum around the bad tooth. The tooth goes completely numb for three to four hours. This works a damn sight better than wheatgrass mouthwash.

Post 43

I am 21 years old. My face is swollen on the left side. It hurts so bad and I am getting tired of taking pain medication. I just want to be pain free.

Post 42

I am 20 and have a new tooth coming on my lower left side. It is hurting a lot even without eating or touching it. I saw the doctor and he said there is need of an operation. Is this correct? He said the skin is stopping the tooth from coming in.

Post 41

I have had a bad wisdom tooth for a long, long time and I have looked after it because I am afraid of dentists.

I recently drummed up the guts to get it seen by a dentist and he said he could not take it out because it has too much decay. He got me an appointment in hospital but I had to have an operation on my stomach and when I was in hospital I got my dental appointment and I was too unwell to go. I am still looking after my temp-filled wisdom tooth.

Post 40

I am 31 year old male. I got my lower wisdom teeth removed just two days ago. During the procedure, everything was OK. I had no pain, but after the extraction, I thought that I would die of pain. I couldn't sleep and was just restless. The second day pain started to decrease because I've been on penadine forte, but it's been three days now and I want to know how many days or how much time it will take the pain to go away. Please, does anyone have the answer?

Post 39

I been having headaches and I just noticed I have pain in front and in back of my ear. I tried to see if I can wiggle my top back tooth and it wiggles. It means my wisdom teeth need to be pulled! But I don't want to pull them!

I need to try the clove oil, but haven't tried it yet. For those who are using listerine, it has to be the amber kind to kill germs. Not the green, only the amber. And I wouldn't trust fluoride toothpastes anymore. Make your own. Use baking soda and brush, floss and rinse after every meal.

Post 38

I've taken two tramadol and they've done nothing. My left wisdom tooth is partially showing, which doesn't hurt, but my right one is about ready but hasn't broken through my gum yet. I feel like extracting it myself. Worst pain ever!

Post 36

It's four in the morning and my sockets from my wisdom teeth on the left side are killing me! I am only 13 and I had my teeth pulled two days ago. What should I do?

Post 35

I'm in hell! The pain is unbearable. The pain is now on it's 5th day, but my wisdom tooth still not erupting. I hate it! What will I do?

Post 34

I am having my wisdom teeth removed. Is there a way to check references? Is there a certification I need to make sure he has? What is my risk of losing the feeling in my face? One of my friend told me it is very easy now and you can book you appointment online as a patient, and you can directly meet the doctor at your place and at a convenient time. Is this a good option for me?

Post 33

I am 19 and I am experiencing a lot of pain. I don't know what to do. What is the best pain reliever medicine?

Post 32

I'm 17 and I've been having pain on the top left wisdom tooth. It has been keeping me from going to sleep and pain killers aren't working and I don't have time for the dentist as exams are soon. Any help?

Post 31

I'm a 29 year old male in New Jersey and I've had issues with my back teeth as long as I can remember. Recently however, while on vacation in Wyoming, I developed severe pain from my left side jaw down into my neck. Needless to say, flying and altitude changes in the mountains aggravates the problem as many folks here know, I'm sure. The problem really comes when it's time to go to sleep. I can be okay all day and then when I lay down, the pain comes within minutes. Even as I write this, I have been up all night.

I've been using Listerine on top of my normal mouthwash, and I've also tried salt water, peroxide, rosemary

, and none seem to help. I've also tried massaging (gently) the jaw and cheek and my neck on that side, which sometimes can help, though not always. I've found some luck with blueberries, which are plentifully grown here in NJ. I read they are good for mouth sores and dental pain. The seem to dull the pain slightly.

I'm about to go try some rum to see if it will help me sleep and dull the pain. I have not had health or dental insurance in 10 years but I am thinking I may simply have to go get this pulled. Not sure how much longer I can try to just manage.

Post 30

I had my wisdom teeth out last month at age 31 years. When I went to have them removed, the dentist took an x-ray. I was in serious pain, and upon looking at the x-ray, the dentist said yes, there is an infection and she needed to extract the tooth. I agreed; I just wanted to get rid of the pain.

Once I had agreed, the doctor asked me to fill out a disclaimer in case things went wrong. She explained we needed to do this as there were two roots on my wisdom tooth and she went on to explain that it was very uncommon for a wisdom tooth to have two roots. I said OK, let's get it

done. So, she numbed me and extracted the tooth no hassle. It was only after the extraction and I saw the look on her face when I asked, "What's wrong doc?" She said, "Oh, it's nothing to worry about It's just your tooth did not have two roots; it had four roots." She was amazed, I was relieved and everyone was happy as I was leaving the dental hospital (which is a training hospital for Irish dentists). I said to the doc, "Hey seems having four roots on my wisdom tooth is so very rare, I must be very wise!" We all had a chuckle and i left very happy.

P.S. My wisdom tooth is now used in the classes held at the dental hospital training wing of Trinity College, Dublin.

Post 28

I have got severe pain in my tooth, and the only thing which relieves me of the pain is holding water in mouth, though it is a little annoying, but it's better than going through so much pain, as no painkillers are working for me.

Post 27

I am in a lot of pain and have been for the past four or five days. My jaw is really sore and my gum at the left hand side of my mouth is inflamed and really sore. I have been using salt water for a while but have only now seen that it's not getting any better and I can't go on with the pain, so tomorrow I'm going to phone the doctor to make an appointment.

Post 26

I'm 39 and i need two wisdom teeth taken out, but will have to wait months before i get them taken out because i will have to go to the hospital to get them taken out because i have the biggest fear of needles.

i take two ibuprofen and two nurofen and one tramadol. I put some vodka on my tooth and I'm still in massive pain. I tried cloves but they don't work for me.

Post 25

@anon172840: Try Aleve for the pain. As for the chipmunk cheeks, try putting an ice pack on both sides of your face (wrapped in a towel), and also sleep with two pillows under your shoulders and three under your head. This keeps your head elevated and helps with drainage, which can cause some of the swelling.

I had all four of my wisdom teeth out at the same time, too, and that was what my oral surgeon recommended to reduce swelling. It worked like a charm.

Post 24

I'm a 17 year old female who just got all four of her wisdom teeth removed yesterday. I understand that on the same day I would be getting so much pain (which happened) but when I went to go drink some medication for the pain, I still was in pain! What the dentist prescribed me wasn't good enough, and I was wondering if there is any other medication that's over the counter I can use instead of the one he gave me. P.s. What's the fastest way to reduce these darn chipmunk cheeks?

Post 23

I'm 17 and my right bottom wisdom tooth is coming in. My left bottom one is also coming in but it's not causing any pain. I tried many things for the pain but the only thing that works for me is pain killers. The pain isn't unbearable, it's just constant and annoying. and it causes my jaw to be sore and sometimes throbs.

Post 22

Just had my wisdom teeth pulled three days ago.

They had been impacted, which means that they were coming up under my other teeth, and had I not gone to get them removed I would have had major problems the worst being my wisdom teeth getting caught in my jaw nerve and losing feeling in my jaw.

I'm 19 and even I know when it is time to go see a real doctor. These other treatments may stop the pain for a time, but in the end it hurts because something is wrong. I am still healing after getting them out but should be better in a few days time. Trust me when I say the best treatment is to get them removed because even if you are not in pain that doesn't mean that something isn't wrong.

Post 21

I feel what everyone has said. i have that problem now. I'm 44, very afraid off needles and had this problem for maybe three months before i felt the pain but check this out: i have high blood pressure and every time i go to uconn dental for severe pain they tell me no, your blood pressure is too high for us to pull the tooth. It can cause a stroke and other problems so what do you think about that?

I'm in so much pain. I'm on meds for pain and infections and its my left bottom wisdom and left top and both have a hole in them. Now that's pain. I don't know when i can get them out because of my blood pressure. I've had no sleep hardly eat because I'm scared the pain may come. it just stops my whole everything and I have no energy. please tell me what should i do.

Post 20

I am 19 and I think my wisdom tooth is coming out. It's so painful, it's just killing me. I tried to put some garlic on it, but it only works for a few minutes. The pain is now the same as it was 10 minutes ago. It feels like the left side of my face is swollen. I'm scared. i can't see the tooth coming out. i think the best option is to see the dentist tomorrow.

Post 19

my tooth pain started this morning. the pain is bearable but I'm wondering when it will end or if it will get worse. i don't want to get my tooth pulled, but i really don't have anything that i can use to relieve the pain! answers and suggestions, please!

Post 18

I'm 23 and my wisdom tooth is coming through but feels like its pushing my teeth in front and causing me a lot of pain, plus my gum is very sore and looks as if it's going to split.

I've tried all sorts of stuff to ease the pain but found holding water in my mouth is the only thing that works.

Looks like I'm going to have to go the dentist and get it pulled out because this pain is horrible.

Post 17

The alternative treatments of oils and garlic are not blatant lies, nor are they alternative. They are simply effective treatments. Dentists use clove oil when you are in the chair, and garlic does work. If I had listened to you anon86881, I'd still be in pain. Way to spread ignorance.

Post 16

All I can say is this. I was in tooth hell.

Order it online if you have to, but get some clove oil. If you get essential oils, you will dilute them 10 percent with olive oil and then apply.

If you can't get it, order the red cross toothache kit online - if you have a bad toothache, canker sore, order two. It saved me and I can sleep again and everything finally started healing too when Vicodin, antibiotics and cold presses did nothing for the sleep-stealing pain. Clove oil got me through it.

Post 15

I actually used cream of tartar. My pain was extremely diminished.

Post 14

i am 29 and do not have any type of insurance. it's been killing me for three days on and off. what should i do? part of it i can feel the rest is under my gums. what it feels like is the tooth above it is rubbing the gums. i need to get some sleep. i have a new job to start soon. Help.

Post 13

Interesting. After having lower right wisdom tooth pain for a few days, having had the doctor check it over to see if it is infected, the dr gave me a script for panadeine forte(500mg paracetamol and 30mg codeine).

I also got some toothache ease stuff with clove oil added(pharmacist recommended it).

I thought I'll have a look online and see what's recommended. after seeing a few sites recommending cloves, garlic lime juice and salt, I thought sure I'll give it a go and add some honey to make it less yucky. it eased it a fair bit, will have to reapply, but well it's natural not some concentrated chemically based formula, that you're not supposed to use for too many days.

Post 12

I could not agree more with the previous comment. Go to a trusted dentist or oral surgeon to get the wisdom teeth checked out if it starts to hurt. It may be an early sign of teeth decay which may eventually need to an infection if left untreated.

I experienced it first hand myself. The infection spread to my facial tissues causing an unsightly swelling. My oral surgeon extracted the infected wisdom tooth (the source of the infection) and put me on antibiotics.

If the infection had not been contained (some bacteria are antibiotics resistant), I would have had to be hospitalized on IV or be cut open under my jaw or neck to drain out the pus that had accumulated. Do not be your own doctor!

Post 11

i won't get mine pulled because I'm a big baby and they're not infected so i just rub a little vodka or peppermint schnapps on them. nothing else works, not even vicodin.

Post 9

wisdom teeth have to come out to relieve future pain. Temporarily you can use Anbesol or Dr. Sheffield's both are Oral Relief. They use the ingredient Benzocaine at 20 percent. These products will numb the area and you can apply to teeth and gums. It's the strongest thing Ive found short of a dentist giving me the numb shot!

Post 8

I'm having really bad pain in my left jaw, a tooth is growing under my gum, i don't know if it is my wisdom tooth or not. i am 23 and it is killing me a lot. I can't sleep or eat. what should i do?

Post 7

My wisdom teeth seem to be growing sideways as they have not broken the skin at all. I found that holding/swishing water around my mouth stops the pain dead in its tracks. It is a little tiring after awhile but it is better than the pain!

Post 6

Clove oils, garlic cloves and the salt water are great for fighting infections (there is research.) You will always have pain with wisdom teeth so don't compound the problem with infections!-keep it clean. For the pain you can take advil. It works for me.

Post 5

I've found that, for me at least, just holding water in my mouth dulls the pain to basically nothing. I've had pain in my wisdom tooth coming through, and it's infected. My dentist gave me some antibiotics, but that didn't help the pain. It was really quite unbearable for the last three days, until today, when i decided to just hold some water in my mouth for a bit!

Post 4

I'm 14 and somehow my wisdom teeth are growing and causing me extreme pain every night when I try to sleep. pain meds and injections won't work and neither do the remedies here. I would just like to ask if there are any others out there because I can't even sleep with the pain I get from it.

Post 3

These alternative treatments consisting of oils, garlic, onion and reflexology are blatant lies and no evidence backs these claims.

Post 2

My wisdom tooth have been coming but with severe pain but i have one other problem -- OSF fibrosis! please give me best opinion: what i do with my wisdom teeth?

Post 1

But don't hesitate in getting those things out. If infection is present and it erupts, as it eventually will, as my oral surgeon told me, "There aren't enough antibiotics in a bottle to treat it. You'll have to go into the hospital and have IV antibiotics." That did it for me and I had the things out. I am glad I did. It wasn't the most fun thing I've ever done, but I did what the doctor told me to do, took my meds as I was supposed to and didn't have any complications. I made the right decision.

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