CPR First Aid

First Aid for Toothache

Healthdirect, a website that the Australian government and other organisations support, states that the first aid for toothache is salt water and a cold compress. But the information service recommends visiting your dentist if it lasts more than 2 days. Because a health professional may find that you need further treatment such as filling, root canal therapy, or a crown. Need to know further how to manage toothaches? The below information may guide you in minimising pain and discomfort if you experience problems with your teeth.

What is the First Aid for Toothache?

Healthdirect explains the following first aid steps when treating toothache.

  • Gurgling a mixture of 1 teaspoon salt and 1 cup of warm water
  • Placing a cold compress onto the side of your face where it’s painful

The website also suggests lying with a pillow as being flat may worsen dental pain.

Healthdirect explains the following first aid steps when treating toothache.

What is Not the First Aid for Toothache?

Healthdirect does not recommend using clove oil or aspirin to treat toothaches.

Where Can You Get the First Aid for Toothache?

Salt is available in most grocery stores and CPR First Aid (RTO NO 21903) includes a cold compress in its first aid kits. It is also possible to improvise by wrapping an ice pack with a cloth.

What is CPR First Aid (RTO NO 21903)?

It’s a Registered Training Organisation that provides free online courses on its website. It also offers actual first aid training at Neighbourhood Centre, Maroochy, 2 Fifth Ave, Maroochydore, and in its other centres. 

What Else is in a First Aid Kit Aside from a Cold Compress?

The snake and spider bite kit available in CPR First Aid (RTO NO 21903) also includes the following.

  • Bandages
  • Splints
  • Dressings
  • Marker
  • First Aid Leaflet

All of the above items including an instant ice pack come in a Versatile Softpack reinforced fabric bag.

When is Further Treatment Required After Applying a First Aid for Toothache?

Healthdirect advises going to a dentist if you experience the following.

  • Having a fever with a temperature of over 38⁰C
  • Suffering from trouble breathing or swallowing
  • There is redness, swelling, pain, and bad-tasting discharge in your mouth which may indicate an infection

The same resource also recommends the same action if your toothache lasts for more than 2 days.

Healthdirect advises going to a dentist if you experience the following.

How Do You Avoid Having to Apply First Aid for a Toothache?

If you want to avoid suffering from a toothache in the first place, you may want to follow the below tips. 

  • Brushing your teeth with fluoride toothpaste in the morning and at night
  • Flossing daily
  • Consuming 6 or fewer teaspoons of added sugar per day to decrease the risk of tooth decay
  • Choosing sugar-free chewing gum over the regular ones
  • Hydrating yourself with water
  • Visiting your dentists every 6 or 12 months

The Australian Dental Association (ADA), a peak national body for dentists, provided the above 6 steps to a healthy smile on its website.

What are the Causes of Toothache?

ADA lists the following reasons for having a toothache.

  • Tooth decay starts with discomfort when eating sweet or cold food
  • A wisdom tooth that sits partly in the mouth
  • Broken tooth due to decay, food, biting hard, and opening items with your teeth

The same organisation explains that treatment will depend on which of the above reasons causes your toothache.

What are the Further Treatments for Toothache?

A dentist may find that you need one of the following treatments for a toothache.

  • A dental filling to fill a hole or cavity in a tooth
  • Root canal therapy to repair the damaged inside of a tooth
  • A dental crown to cover an existing tooth

A dentist will examine your teeth and may perform an x-ray to identify which of the above procedures to apply.

What are the Possible Complications of a Toothache?

Healthdirect outlines the possible effects of an untreated toothache.

  • There is a chance to destroy the tissues inside your mouth
  • Long-term mouth problems
  • Difficulty chewing and swallowing food which later on may impact your nutrition and general health
  • A negative effect on your overall health

To avoid any of the above, the website recommends applying the above first aid and/or going to a dentist to fix your toothache.

Where Can You Find a Dentist to Treat Toothache?

ADA has a ‘Find a Dentist’ feature on its website that allows you to search according to location and a dentist’s name. It also lets you easily browse the map. 


The first aid for toothache is salt water and a cold compress. But, if it lasts for more than 2 days and/or you experience other symptoms, you may have to go to a dentist. A healthcare provider may find that you need further treatments after examining your teeth and performing an x-ray. Depending on the cause of your toothache, you may have to undergo filling, root canal therapy, or a crown. Performing first aid and having a dentist apply procedures is important to avoid further complications in your mouth. Especially since a toothache may affect your eating, nutrition, and overall health. 



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