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What to do for dental pain before your dental appointment?

Dental pain is the stuff of horror movies

Scary dentists and acute tooth ache feature in many movies as part of the entertainment! Surely this comes from the widely held fear and unpleasant memories of dental pain?

Dental pain can come on suddenly from a cracked tooth or trauma. Or may come and go over a period of time when decay is advancing. When it strikes, knowing how to manage it before your dental appointment can ease the associated stress.

Simple and effective pain relief tips

Research has found a relationship between two familiar, over-the-counter medications. Findings show a solution, both more effective at relieving acute pain and safer than stronger pain killers.

Normal doses of paracetamol and ibuprofen when taken together have been shown to provide greater relief from pain than either medication taken alone.

Since 2000, codeine, a (once) readily available opioid, has been linked with increasing numbers of death from overdose in US, UK and Australia. Factors involved include variations in how the drug is metabolised by an individual (which is genetic), as well as interactions with other common drugs. Since February 2018, even medications with low-dose codeine are no longer available without prescription.

Ice-packs to the outer cheek have an excellent anti-inflammatory effect which helps to ease pain from irritated, inflamed tissues. Twenty minutes with an ice-pack also produces a soothing localised numbing effect, enhancing relief from pain.

Other things to understand about tooth ache

One final tip is to avoid lying flat at night. By propping the head and shoulders on pillows, or sleeping in a recliner chair, the head is kept above the heart. This reduces blood flow to the area which otherwise increases swelling and likelihood of throbbing.

Bli Bli Smiles…for the teeth of your life

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