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Dental pain is likely to affect everyone at some point in their lives. The pain can vary from a dull throbbing sensation to a sharp, persistent stabbing. No matter how much pain your toothache is causing you, it can be very distressing. A toothache pain at night can be a horrible and worrying experience.

This article will discuss what causes toothache, tips for sleeping with a toothache, and more. 


What causes a toothache?

A toothache might be caused by the following:

  • Infected gums
  • Repetitive motions, such as grinding teeth or chewing gum  
  • A damaged filling
  • Tooth fracture
  • Abscessed tooth
  • Tooth decay



When is toothache a dental emergency?

If you have tooth pain accompanied by any of the following symptoms, seek emergency treatment without delay:

  • A toothache that lasts longer than two days
  • Fever
  • Difficulty swallowing and breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Shortness of breath or lightheadedness
  • Swelling in your jaw or face


How to sleep with a toothache?

Here are six tips to sleep with a toothache. 


1. Sleep with your head raised

When you go to bed at night, support your head with one or more pillows. If you use only one pillow, ensure it’s thick enough so that your shoulders and head are elevated. You can reduce inflammation and keep fluids from accumulating around the troublesome tooth by keeping your head elevated. Try sleeping while sitting up slightly if feasible. 


2. Floss

Before hitting the bed, remember to floss around the hurting teeth. Getting rid of debris between your teeth can help decrease the pressure that might add to your discomfort. To floss your teeth properly, follow these steps.

  • Use the floss to clean the contours of your teeth gently.
  • Use a sawing or rocking motion to work the floss between your teeth so that it does not snap and harm your gums.


3. See your dentist to determine what’s causing your toothache and get it treated

If you have a painful toothache, it’s essential to go to a dentist immediately so they can run tests and determine what’s causing the problem. They may conduct a dental exam and take x-rays to pinpoint the source of your discomfort and pain. Once they identify the problem, they can start treatment and offer advice on how to deal with any nighttime pain. 


4. Use an over-the-counter medication

Over-the-counter pain medications with ingredients such as naproxen, acetaminophen, and ibuprofen, can help reduce the painful symptoms of a toothache. Ensure to read the labels carefully and stick to the recommended dosage levels. 


5. Rinse your mouth using salt water before going to sleep

Not only will the warm water help soothe any discomfort, but it can also kill bacteria that could be causing your toothache. Cleanse your mouth with salt water 2-3 times per day, especially before bedtime. To prepare a salt water rinse:

  • In a glass of warm water, dissolve one teaspoon of salt.
  • Rinse the salt water solution in your mouth for about one minute, focusing on the area causing you pain.
  • Spit out the salt water solution when you are finished. 


6. Use an ice pack

relief pain tooth night brighton le sandsIf your dental pain is accompanied by inflammation and tenderness, an ice pack can help reduce the swelling and prevent fluids from accumulating. To mitigate swelling or pain before bedtime, take an ice pack and wrap it in a towel. Apply the ice pack to the swollen area for 10 minutes, once an hour.

  • Always place a thin cloth between your skin and the ice to avoid ice burns.
  • Abstain from using a heat source to ease your aching jaw. Heat might aggravate your symptoms. 


Why do some toothaches feel stronger at night?

Toothaches might not feel as bad during the day but can worsen during nighttime. A potential reason for this is that blood rushes to your head when you lie down. This extra blood leads to increased pressure and pain from toothache. Another reason toothaches feel worse at night is that there are fewer distractions to concentrate on. As a result, it becomes more difficult to fall asleep. 


Seek professional dental treatment to get relief from a nagging toothache

If you’re in pain from a toothache, the tips mentioned above may help ease your discomfort and allow for a better night’s sleep. However, it is essential to know that these are not permanent solutions. Patients who experience a toothache at night should see a dentist right away.

Are you suffering from a toothache? Our team at Bright-On Bay Dental is here to help! Our friendly dentist will assess and determine the source of your toothache, provide the appropriate treatment, and help you feel better again. Call us at (02) 9538 7028 to book your appointment.






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