Instructables

Using Clove to Cure Toothaches

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Picture of Using Clove to Cure Toothaches
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Clove oil is hands down the most effective home remedy for tooth pain of any kind.

This instructable will show you how to make a decoction from whole cloves but I would be remiss if I didn't also mention that clove oil can be purchased from most pharmacies and is, due to the steam distillation process, much more potent and effective at relieving severe dental pain.

[However if you are suffering from severe tooth pain you should consult a dentist. Clove oil should only be used for temporary relief as prolonged use can deaden the nerve.]

Cloves have been used to treat toothaches since medieval times and knowing this trick can save you from experiencing a world of pain and discomfort. The active ingredient in clove oil is eugenol and this treatment is ideal for someone about to undergo a root canal or suffering from dry socket.

If you use clove oil to get relief from a simple cavity please do no do so repeatedly as it is possible to do more harm than good in the long run - only use this remedy to make the wait for your dentist's appointment go by more easily.
 
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Step 1: Whole Cloves

Picture of Whole Cloves
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You can simply place a whole clove into your mouth on or near the tooth that hurts, bite down & grind to release the oils, and wait. You'll know the oil has been released when you sense a bitter taste and a tingling sensation on your tongue and gums.

Whether chewing a whole clove or using the oil you will want to spit - don't.
Wait a couple of minutes before rinsing your mouth out with water.

The analgesic effect should last a couple of hours and the bitter taste should subside in under ten minutes.

If you don't have access to clove oil and want to make a close approximation at home, grind whole cloves with a mortar & pestle, coffee grinder or blender.

You can also make clove tea to effectively relieve the pain with less mess - Thanks to putty1cat for sharing!
Great instructable! I've used commercial preparations myself, and I figured there was some way to make your own, but I was never quite sure what to do with the cloves. I'll have to give this a try!
Laynie8 months ago
My dentist told me to use clove after having my wisdom teeth pulled, it really does work!
I thought the thumbnail picture was a pile of rotten teeth :) Very appropriate!
This is the main ingredient of commercial preparations, like anbesol. Nice to have a 'ibile to save several bucks!

This is also used by dentists all the time. This is what's on the little q-tip they swab your gum with to numb it before sticking the novocain needle in, and mine packed in some when he attached a temporary crown.

Still, if you have tooth pain at all, you should have it checked by a dentist, severe or not...getting some mild pain checked out can well prevent going from 'hey this tooth is sensitive to cold' to ' ouch ouch ouch ouch now I need a root canal!'
kennan9 months ago
Presumably, this would work for other pain, too, no?
alannarosewhitney (author)  kennan9 months ago
Absolutely.

Clove / clove oil has also traditionally been used to sooth sore muscles and other aches besides dental pain. Just use it as a topical salve and don't get it into an open wound, cut or scratch, etc.
Thanks, good to know. And great Instructable.
Yashfa Zafar9 months ago
Voted! this works, I know :)
whitepaper_019 months ago
This actually WORKS !!
My grandmother forced this "old-wives B.S." upon me.
I was just about to kick her so I could get away when the pained stopped.
After that I pestered her to teach me everything she knew.
She knew a goddam awful lot !!
It was more than once she tried to get rid of me with her boot. But I kept on at her.
I only recently learned that her whole family has this knowledge and that she never went to the hospital once in her life.
Are you kidding me or what!!
Now that ive taught my sons and daughter the same (although I cant recall how i did it) Im pretty sure now that that old woman tricked into learning and passing on that "old wives B.S"
motleyjust8 months ago
In a pinch, I have used ordinary ground cloves from my cooking spices. Just put a bit on a finger tip and rub onto the gums, or into the tooth, if there is an actual hole in it.
SparkyGage9 months ago
Just chiming in that this does work for TEMPORARY relief. Might want to change the title to say "Relieve" instead of "Cure". Other than that, great writeup I thought.
MrIlson179 months ago
I figured this lil trick with the oil out when I was working in a spice factory. Never knew how to make it though. Thanks
mmarchesoni9 months ago
Nice instructable. It really works, but sometimes we can't wait for 2 weeks or so to obtain some clove oil to releaf a toothaches.
when it occours, a really good shortcut is to apply the light from a red laser pointer over the sore tooth for a few seconds up to a minute, 3 times a day or more, if necessary.
Common red laser pointers, these ones of 5mW only, works very very well, and are quite safe if no one decides to aim it on others eye, just for fun.
cindi599 months ago
I have clove oil everywhere! Seems like every time I misplace my little bottle someone has a toothache!
I haven't made my own because it is cheap enough in the store.
lassensurf9 months ago
This is great. Just reiterating that this is for temporary relief only. If you have a toothache it's because germs are inside your tooth already and getting into the jawbone, creating infection. Go get it taken care of!!! (the longer the tooth is infected, the worse/more painful it is to get it taken care of, I'm a dentist and trying to get a long-time infected/aching tooth numb can be almost impossible!)

Eugenol is the active ingredient in clove oil and it's also used in Orajel, some mouthrinses, topical anesthetics and even some cements that dentists use.

This is a great 'ible. I'll try this! Thanks!
stephenfitton9 months ago
Lovely ,yep! it works.
One I haven't tried is the gum from the mulberry tree onto a decayed tooth , rub it in firmly once only and a week later the tooth will crumble recipe- 200 year old.
foolishcop9 months ago
What kind of oil are you using? Vegetable? Olive? Corn? Something else?
alannarosewhitney (author)  foolishcop9 months ago
Good question. I'm using grapeseed oil in the instructable.

You can use olive oil, canola, or vegetable, etc... as well. Whatever is on hand or easy to get.

The oil base is acting as a solvent for absorbing the clove oil so the type you use does not make a drastic difference except possibly in colour and taste (though the clove flavour will be strong as well).

Choosing a variety of oil with a higher smoke point is a good idea since you will be heating it for such a long period of time. (i.e. Olive oil is 375℉ while grapeseed is 420℉ and canola is between 400/450℉.)

putty1cat9 months ago
I just have the whole cloves [3] in a cuppa tea, then tuck them up in my cheek next to the tooth. Less work, lol
alannarosewhitney (author)  putty1cat9 months ago
Great! I edited the Instructable to include this. Thanks for providing yet another method for using clove to cure toothaches!