Is CBD Effective at Relieving Nagging Tooth Pain?
You may have heard of CBD being used to treat joint pain, nausea, anxiety, sleep disorders, and many more conditions or symptoms. But have you ever considered if CBD would be an effective solution for nagging tooth pains?
Tooth pain is one of the most inconvenient and bothersome feelings we experience. And unless you have a dentist readily available to help you treat your dental dilemma, even minor symptoms of dental pain can ruin your day.
In this article, we’ll dive into the research around CBD and its effectiveness in treating tooth pain.
What Is CBD?
CBD is widely recognized as a popular natural remedy when it comes to naturally sourced treatments for those suffering from pain.
You may have many questions about CBD, even if you’ve already used it as a treatment. Its popularity has emerged over the years. However, CBD is not just a fad. The truth is, CBD is here to stay. As more people (including medical professionals) recognize the natural powers of CBD, these products are becoming more in demand.
If you are new to the world of CBD products & treatment, there’s no need to be intimidated. You may see CBD a lot in the media, marketed products, or even health journals. It may be popular, but it’s also a very beneficial method for a range of treatments.
In short, CBD refers to cannabidiol, which is one of the most notable active ingredients found in marijuana (aka cannabis) plants. While CBD does derive from the hemp plant (the cousin of the mariajuana plant), it does not provide the psychoactive effects or “high” feeling that cannabis products containing tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, will produce.
CBD is not a cure; however, it has been shown to provide relief for many symptoms that result from health conditions. CBD can help relieve an extensive range of health symptoms without the risk of developing a dependency.
How does this work? CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) within our body. The ESC typically contains natural cannabinoids made in the body and their cannabinoid receptors- when these interact, the ECS can regulate bodily functions like pain, appetite, or mood. CBD is a cannabinoid that, when ingested or applied to the skin, also interacts with cannabinoid receptors to affect these functions.
Over time, numerous studies and trials have led to FDA-approved forms of CBD treatments that are effective & safe to use.
Can CBD Oil Help With Dental Pain?
Dental pain can refer to a range of symptoms, including tooth sensitivity, aches, cavities, and more. While CBD oil can provide relief for some of these symptoms, others may require attention from a dentist for proper treatment.
So, let’s start by talking about toothaches– one of the most common (and irritating) forms of dental pain. More often than not, toothaches are caused by an inflammation within or around the teeth/gums. Once the swelling begins, so does the toothache.
Research shows that there is a considerable amount of data that demonstrates CBD has anti-inflammatory properties. Some people may take an over-the-counter pain relief medication such as Advil. However, this method does not directly target your pain source in the way that CBD products can. If you are looking for immediate relief for your toothache, it may be more helpful to apply a CBD spray, oil, or tincture (safe for oral use) onto the affected area.
It’s also important to note that infected gums can cause dental pain that is more severe than your typical toothache. While CBD is not a total solution to these infections, it can help reduce the severity. A 2020 study noted that CBD oil could provide nutrients within the gums that help regulate the function of bacterias. This study also concluded from their research that CBD performed well compared to other treatments to reduce plaque.
Overall, one can conclude from the abundance of research on this topic that CBD can effectively relieve toothaches & other causes of dental pain. However, it’s important to remember that this does not cover every factor of dental pain, and some cases will need attention from a professional dentist.
Common Methods of Taking CBD For Dental Pain
If your dental pain is exceptionally severe or connected to a certain dental condition, your dentist should be the person to help you find the proper method of treatment. However, in less severe cases like common toothaches, CBD can be an extremely effective natural remedy.
When flossing isn’t getting the job done, it might be a good idea to grab some CBD to help relieve your pain. The most common CBD methods for tooth pain include capsules/edibles, as well as CBD oil tinctures.
CBD oil tinctures are an excellent method when you are looking for fast relief. That being said, if you’re looking for immediate results, there are different ways to achieve this with CBD oil. When you are shopping for your CBD, it helps find a product that comes with a dropper for your tincture.
The first method you can try is taking the dropper, apply a few drops of CBD oil to your finger (wash your hands first), or a q-tip. Then take your finger/swab and gently apply the CBD oil to your gums, targeting the source of your pain. The second method you can try with CBD oil is adding it to your toothpaste. Add about 1-2 drops of CBD oil to the toothpaste on your toothbrush and start brushing. As you brush, try to give extra attention to the areas surrounding your gums where the pain is coming from.
Using CBD oil tinctures will most likely take around 20 minutes to start working. If you don’t mind waiting longer to feel relief, you can try taking CBD edibles or capsules instead, which can provide results within an hour or two.
Can I put CBD oil on my gums?
Before you treat your gums with CBD oil, remember to make sure your product is safe for use. Check your CBD oil label for any warnings that advise against applying the product orally.
Once you’ve confirmed that it can be used orally, you can apply it to your gums. It’s recommended that you apply a small amount (1-2) gently around your gums, or you can add it to your toothpaste, as previously mentioned.
Can you brush your teeth after using CBD oil?
Yes, but we recommend allowing the CBD oil to absorb in your mouth before you brush your teeth. If you brush your teeth after using CBD oil, be cautious to avoid swallowing the toothpaste/CBD.
How much CBD should I take for pain?
In terms of dental pain, the average suggestion is to take around 25mg of CBD per dosage. If you would like to start smaller, 15mg-20mg might be a good starting dose.
Can I drive after taking CBD oil?
CBD does not provide any psychoactive effects. Therefore, it will likely not impair your ability to drive. However, it’s important to check with your local laws and restrictions, as they differ among regions. That being said, you are most likely safe to drive after taking CBD oil. The only exception might be if the CBD product you’ve taken contains THC, it can impair your driving. Stay safe.
Are there any known negative side effects of using CBD?
The research available on CBD suggests that there are rare cases of side effects. The potential side effects are not common & typically mild but include dry mouth, nausea, or fatigue. In order to prevent adverse side effects, make sure your CBD dosage is reasonable concerning the recommended amount.
How long does CBD oil stay good for?
Most CBD oils on the market will eventually expire, with an average shelf life that ranges from one to two years. Before you take your CBD oil, remember to check the label for information about the expiration date/shelf life.
CBD for Tooth Pain – February 2022
Studies show cannabidiol (CBD) may have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties (4) . CBD may also have an antibacterial potential that can help combat infections (5) .
Tooth pain is associated with several symptoms like tooth decay , abscessed tooth, and gum infection linked to inflammation and severe pain (6) .
The beneficial characteristics of CBD may help alleviate dental pain and swelling and reduce the likelihood of bacterial infection.
What Is CBD?
CBD is a cannabinoid found in cannabis plant extracts, particularly hemp oil.
CBD and other cannabinoids like tetrahydrocannabinol ( THC ) are essential components of medical marijuana (7) . However, unlike THC , CBD does not cause any psychoactive effects (8) .
In 2015, the Food and Drug Administration relaxed the regulatory requirements for cannabis , allowing researchers to conduct more CBD trials (9) .
Hemp was legalized in the U.S. through the enactment of the 2018 Farm Bill, making CBD legal at the federal level (10) .
CBD’s Anti-Inflammatory Properties
A review published in Frontiers in Pharmacology in 2018 analyzed the use of cannabis plants to relieve chronic pain (11) . The findings suggested that cannabinoids may have significant analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties.
The same review stated that CBD use for the treatment of pain had not been clinically evaluated. However, the anti-inflammatory benefits may be an indication that CBD can also be effective as an analgesic .
CBD and the Endocannabinoid System
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) contains the CB1 and CB2 receptors responsible for regulating the body’s immune system . When these receptors are activated, the body’s inflammatory responses are triggered (12) .
CBD works by interacting with the cannabinoid receptors to help reduce inflammation. This interaction suggests that CBD may indirectly improve the body’s anti-inflammatory response (13) .
CBD Research on Tooth Pain
A 2008 review was conducted to determine the safety and efficacy of CBD in pain management . The review stated that Sativex, a cannabis -based oromucosal spray, may be safe and effective for pain relief (14) .
Another review published in Future Medicinal Chemistry in 2009 mentioned that cannabinoids , including CBD and delta 9- tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9- THC ), interact with CB1 and CB2 receptors in the ECS to suppress the body’s inflammatory response (15) .
A study conducted by University of Belgrade researchers in 2018 mentioned that the side effects of cannabis , when utilized for short-term medical use , tend to be mild or moderate and are generally well tolerated (16) .
Findings in the same study suggested that CBD may have analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects.
Still, to date, there has been no specific study indicating that CBD can help with tooth pain . Well designed , large-scale studies with longer durations are still required to determine the long-term safety and efficacy of cannabinoids , particularly CBD.
How to Use CBD for Tooth Pain
There are different types of high-quality CBD products that individuals can try for tooth pain, depending on their preferred application method (17) :
- Tinctures – CBD in the form of tinctures can be taken using a dropper to apply drops of CBD oil sublingually or under the tongue. Tinctures mix CBD oil with a carrier oil, such as hempseed oil or coconut oil .
This method results in faster absorption of CBD into the system. The compound bypasses the digestive system and is immediately absorbed into the bloodstream (18) .
- Edibles – Examples of edibles are CBD capsules or gummies that are taken orally . Although this method has a more prolonged onset, the effects usually last longer.
- Vapes – CBD can also be inhaled using vapes . Effects are usually felt immediately as the body absorbs CBD faster through inhalation (19) . However, vaping may cause lung damage (20) . Consultation with a health professional or physician is recommended before considering vaping for tooth pain.
- Topicals – CBD toothpaste may be used when brushing teeth for targeted pain relief. Other topicals include CBD creams, balms, and lotions.
CBD Dosage for Tooth Pain
Most manufacturers of CBD products provide specific dosage recommendations on the brand’s product label.
However, many of these products come in different forms and with varying levels of potency (21) . There is currently no standard dosage to help manage one’s health conditions.
To date, the FDA has not approved any specific CBD dosage for toothaches . As a disclaimer , CBD products are marketed and sold as a supplement and not as tooth pain medication (22) .
Benefits of CBD for Tooth Pain
Clinical trials for determining the effectiveness and safety of CBD for managing tooth pain have not been conducted.
However, CBD’s analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties (23) may be a good indication that CBD can help alleviate pain and inflammation brought by tooth pain .
Risk Factors and Side Effects of CBD
CBD intake can lead to side effects like diarrhea, dry mouth , drowsiness, loss of appetite, and fatigue. CBD also interacts with other medications like blood thinners (24) .
If the CBD product has a grapefruit warning, the product is not recommended to be taken together with other medication. CBD is likely to interfere with the effects of other medications (25) .
Types of Tooth Pain
There are different types of tooth pain depending on whether the pain feels sharp or dull. The pain can also cause difficulty in biting, chewing, concentrating, or even sleeping. The following are some types of tooth pain (26) :
Dull Tooth Pain
Bruxism, or teeth grinding, can cause dull tooth pain . This pain can result in sinus headaches felt in the teeth and face (27) .
Sensitivity is usually caused by worn-out tooth enamel or exposed roots. Other causes include cavities, chipped teeth, or worn fillings (28) .
Sharp Pain When Biting Food
This type of pain can be caused by tooth decay , cracked tooth, or loose tooth filling that can cause damage to the dental pulp (oral tissue) (29) .
Intense Pain and Swelling of Gums
An infection likely causes pain due to a tooth abscess. The infection can penetrate the tissue and bone surrounding the tooth, causing severe pain (30) .
Causes of Tooth Pain
The pulp inside the tooth contains sensitive nerves and blood vessels that can cause severe pain when infected or irritated, leading to pulpitis or inflammation of the pulp (31) . Causes of tooth pain include:
Cavities are damaged areas of the tooth caused by bacteria, sugary beverages, and poor dental health . These factors create holes in the tooth and develop into tooth decay (32) .
When left untreated, tooth decay can become more extensive and damage the deeper layers of the tooth, causing toothache and infection.
Bacterial buildup can create pockets of pus around the tooth, developing into a tooth abscess. Abscesses are caused by three types of infection (33) :
- Gingival – The infection appears in the gums but usually does not affect the tooth.
- Periodontal – The infection develops in the bone or tissues around the tooth. Periodontal infection is common among adults and typically results from gum disease or periodontitis .
- Periapical – The abscess develops at the root tip. Periapical infection happens when bacteria spread into the pulp through a cavity.
Cracked or fractured teeth can be caused by injury or wear and tear. A fractured tooth is associated with pain when biting or chewing food or due to the tooth’s exposure to extremely hot or cold temperatures (34) .
Periodontitis is a disease where the gum’s soft tissue is infected, causing damage to the bone supporting the teeth. Periodontitis can loosen the teeth when the bone is destroyed, leading to tooth loss (35) .
Alternatives to Help with Tooth Pain
Dentists can provide professional dental treatment depending on the type and cause of tooth pain . Some of the dental treatments are as follows (36) :
- Tooth filling – This process involves restoring the tooth’s enamel by filling up the cracked or damaged areas.
If the cavity is discovered early on, the dentist may provide fluoride treatments to reverse the damage. If the damage has progressed, a dental filling is used.
Some materials used for filling include porcelains, resins, or a mixture of other ingredients.
- Tooth extraction – Damage due to fracture or decay may be severe that fillings or restorations are not enough to fix the tooth. Rather than save the damaged tooth, the dentist can remove the tooth.
This solution creates a gap between the teeth and allows the other teeth to shift and close the gap.
- Root canal – If the damage to the tooth reaches the pulp, the person may feel severe nerve pain . D ental surgery via a root canal may save the tooth.
In this procedure, the pulp of the diseased or damaged tooth is removed and replaced with filling. To avoid further infection, the dentist may apply medication.
Home and Natural Remedies
Some home remedies may help provide oral health benefits and temporary relief brought by tooth pain . These remedies include (37) :
- Cold compress – Wrapping ice in a towel and applying it over the affected area for 20 minutes can relieve swelling and pain. If the pain persists, this remedy can be repeated every few hours.
- Saltwater rinse – Saltwater acts as a disinfectant and can be used as a mouthwash to loosen debris stuck between teeth and reduce inflammation.
The rinse is made by mixing half a teaspoon of salt into a glass of warm water.
- Hydrogen peroxide solution – Rinsing with a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution diluted with equal parts of water can help reduce inflammation and pain.
Individuals opting for this remedy should be careful not to swallow the rinse.
- Over-the-counter pain medications – Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can help reduce pain and inflammation. Some NSAIDs include ibuprofen (Advil), naproxen (Aleve), and aspirin.
If the person cannot take NSAIDs, another medication like acetaminophen (Tylenol) can be used.
- Baking soda – Mixing baking soda with calcium, fluoride, and phosphate may help manage tooth sensitivity.
Clinical trials conducted in 2009 suggested that baking soda toothpaste may be more effective than regular toothpaste in managing dentinal sensitivity (38) .
Some natural or herbal products used to help relieve tooth pain include (39) :
- Vanilla extract – This extract contains alcohol that can temporarily act as a painkiller . Vanilla extract has antioxidants that may help with the healing process.
Vanilla extract is applied to the affected teeth and gums using the fingertips or a cotton ball and done a few times every day.
- Peppermint tea – Peppermint is known for its soothing effects. A cooled peppermint tea bag can be applied to the affected area by holding the bag against the tooth and gums in pain.
- Clove oil – This extract is a natural antiseptic that can help manage inflammation and temporarily numb pain.
A small amount of clove oil can be dabbed onto a cotton ball and applied to the affected area . Alternatively, a drop of this extract can be mixed with water and used to rinse the mouth.
- Garlic – This bulbous plant can be crushed into a paste and applied to the painful area. Garlic contains antibacterial properties and may provide temporary pain relief .
1. How can CBD be used for toothaches?
CBD products like edibles or tinctures may help alleviate pain and inflammation (40) , suggesting that CBD may also help relieve toothaches .
2. What is the best medication for relieving tooth pain?
NSAIDs like ibuprofen (Advil), naproxen (Aleve), or aspirin can help relieve tooth pain . Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is another alternative if the person is unable to take NSAIDs (41) .
3. Is CBD illegal?
On a federal level, CBD is legal in the U.S. The states have varying levels of restrictions concerning the purchase and use of CBD products (42) .
Studies suggest that CBD may have analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects (43) . However, CBD has not been approved by the FDA to help relieve tooth pain .
Individuals are advised to consult with a dentistry expert or medical professional before using CBD.