Mother Earth News Blogs > Natural Health

Natural Health

Healthy living, herbal remedies and DIY natural beauty.

Home Remedies for Toothaches, Gingivitis and More

home remedies for toothaches

If you have recurrent dental problems or are currently suffering from pain in a tooth, give these home remedies for toothaches, gingivitis, and bad breath a try. Herbal treatments like turmeric, sage and peppermint are natural and effective ways to ease pain, fight bacteria, and prevent inflammation.

Home Remedies for Toothaches

Experiencing nagging pain near your tooth and gums? While you should make an appointment with your dentist soon to diagnose the cause of the pain, there are many natural herbal therapies that can help ease your discomfort in the mean time. Try the following ideas:

1. Turmeric. Massage ground turmeric around your aching tooth to eliminate pain and swelling.[1]
2. Peppermint. The essential oil of peppermint acts as an analgesic and reduces pain when applied topically.[1] Soak a cotton ball in peppermint oil and place it in your mouth, or rub it directly on the aching tooth.[2] A few drops can also be added to a glass of water to make a pain-relieving mouthwash.
3. Cloves. Oil of cloves can help ease pain in teeth or sore gums.[2] Rub a few drops onto the source of the pain with your finger or a brush.

Gingivitis Treatments

Gingivitis, a common form of gum disease, causes irritation and inflammation in the gums. While gingivitis itself can be mild and even unnoticeable in some cases, it is important to treat as it can lead to more serious oral diseases. These herbs can help you to find relief from gingivitis:

1. Myrrh. Effective for treating inflammation of the gums and fighting oral mucosa that contributes to gingivitis, myrrh can be made into a mouthwash. Dilute 30-60 drops of myrrh tincture in a glass of water. Alternatively, apply the undiluted form to affected areas 2-3 times daily.[2]
2. Sage. Sage is also a natural gingivitis treatment. Make sage tea by adding a few tablespoons of chopped sage leaves to a cup of boiling water. Let steep and cool slightly, then gargle.[2]
3. Peppermint. This herb is also helpful to help relieve inflammation in the gums. Make a mouthwash with a few drops of peppermint oil stirred into a glass of water.[3]
4. Turmeric. Rub a past of 1 turmeric and 1/2 tsp mustard oil onto the teeth and gums twice daily to treat gingivitis.[1]

Bad breath

Nobody likes to deal with bad breath. Luckily there are many bad breath remedies that can help you to stay fresh. Some herbs that help fight bad odor include:

1. Rosemary. Try adding rosemary essential oil to water to make a mouthwash for treating bad breath.[3]
2. Myrrh. Gargling with myrrh-infused water can also eliminate bad odors.[3]
3. Chrysanthemum. This flower has antimicrobial activity, which can help to fight the bacteria that cause bad breath.[4] Make a chrysanthemum tea to be used as a mouthwash by boiling the herb in water.
4. Tea tree oil. This essential oil effectively combats bacteria associated with bad breath.[5] Try gargling with diluted tea tree oil in a glass of water.

Natural Dentistry

These herbal remedies will help you to find relief from a variety of oral health issues. Keeping your mouth healthy and preventing oral diseases is very important; your oral health can impact the health of your entire body. Try finding a biological dentist, who is a dentist trained to approach your dental care in a holistic manner, to care for your oral health. Biological dentists avoid toxins commonly used in dentistry, encourage a lifestyle that will benefit your dental health, and use holistic, naturopathic treatments to care for you.


[1] Indian J Dent Res. 2009 Jan-Mar;20(1):107-9.
[2] Int Dent J. 2011 Dec;61(6):287-96.
[3] J Clin Diagn Res. 2013 Aug;7(8):1827-9.
[4] Curr Ther Res Clin Exp. 2010 Apr;71(2):129-40.
[5] Arch Oral Biol. 2013 Jan;58(1):10-6.

Chelsea Clark is a natural health advocate who is on staff at the Natural Health Advisory Institute. Read more of her articles here.

All MOTHER EARTH NEWS community bloggers have agreed to follow our Blogging Best Practices, and they are responsible for the accuracy of their posts. To learn more about the author of this post, click on the byline link at the top of the page.