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How to Sleep Through a Nighttime Toothache

August 13, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — drwhite @ 3:39 pm
woman in bed with toothache

A toothache can be debilitating when it occurs. Unfortunately, some people don’t realize they have one until it begins to nag them at night. The annoying, persistent pain can prevent you from falling asleep, no matter how tired you are. Since you can’t visit your dentist in the middle of the night, you’re stuck handling the situation on your own until morning. Luckily, there are many ways you can relieve the pain just enough to get some sleep! Read along as your emergency dentist in Evansville shares a few ways to manage a nighttime toothache.

What Causes a Toothache?

There are several reasons why a toothache may occur, including:

  • Mouth or jaw injury from blunt force trauma to the face
  • Drainage from a sinus infection
  • Tooth decay that leaves the nerves in your teeth exposed
  • A lost filling that exposes the nerve inside your tooth
  • An abscessed or infected tooth
  • Food or other debris stuck in between your teeth
  • Gingivitis or gum disease

Tips to Manage a Toothache at Night

If you experience any tooth pain, from mild to severe, you should always contact your dentist for treatment. But what if you can’t visit them right away? Here are some ways you can relieve the pain from a nighttime toothache:

Take Over-the-Counter Medication

Medications like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), acetaminophen (Tylenol), and aspirin can help reduce inflammation and alleviate discomfort from an infected tooth. For additional relief, consider applying a numbing paste or gel that contains benzocaine to the area.

Elevate Your Head

If you allow blood to pool in your head, it can aggravate the toothache and make it worse. Instead of lying down, prop your head up on several pillows while you sleep. It’ll help alleviate some of your pain, improve circulation, and reduce swelling.

Clean Your Teeth

You might not want to brush and floss your teeth while you have a toothache. However, eliminating trapped food particles or other debris can help alleviate some of your discomfort. Before going to bed, clean your teeth thoroughly to remove anything that could be contributing to your pain.

Use a Cold Compress

Wrap an ice pack or other cold compress in a towel and apply it to your cheek over your aching tooth. It’s a simple but effective way to relieve some of your discomfort, minimize swelling in your face and gums, and soothe the area just enough so you can rest.

Don’t Eat Acidic, Cold, or Hard Foods Before Bed

Stay away from acidic, cold, or hard foods right before bed. They can trigger the pain and aggravate any cavities that may have already developed. If you must eat something, indulge in soft foods like applesauce or soup instead.

It’s worth noting that the tips outlined above are only meant for short-term management. You should contact your emergency dentist in Evansville first thing in the morning for immediate care.

About the Practice

At Maple Grove Family Dental, we’re passionate about making every patient feel welcome, comfortable, and satisfied with each dental visit. We understand dental emergencies can happen when you least expect them to, which is why we offer same-day emergency care. Our dental team will be right by your side, ready to assist and support you when you need it most. If you’re suffering from an intense toothache, visit our website or call (608) 882-4860 to schedule an appointment – we’ll give you the prompt relief you deserve!

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