Before your dental appointment, you can temporarily relieve your oral health issues with a natural remedy. You can find many natural treatments at home. They help soothe common teeth and gum issues, including cavities and sore gums.

However, avoid skipping the dentist and relying on natural remedies alone. If you’re worried about the costs, that’s another reason to visit the dentist as soon as possible. Treating your oral health problem by yourself can lead to more severe effects, forcing you to rush to the dentist and pay a higher price.

In addition, teeth alignment problems, such as crowded teeth, protruding jaws, and the like, can only be resolved by an experienced orthodontist. No home remedy or holistic treatment can replace braces.

But you can use the home remedies below to soothe the pain misaligned teeth or braces cause:

Natural Treatments for Cavities

Cavities are tiny holes on the tooth’s surface. Bacteria that create acid out of sugar cause it. These bacteria will also cause plaque, a sticky film that reduces the enamel of your teeth. Try any of these natural remedies to fend off the worst of the cavity and its other effects:

  • Oil Pulling

Oil pulling is an ancient practice where you’d swish around an oil inside your mouth for about 20 minutes. Coconut oil and sesame oil are the common oils used for this treatment. However, oil pulling hasn’t been scientifically proven to remove toxins from the mouth. But in a small, triple-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial, results showed that oil pulling with sesame oil worked as effectively as chlorhexidine mouthwash.

  • Licorice Root

At least one study says that the extracts from the Chinese licorice plant can fight the bacteria that cause cavities. To prove this, one researcher created a licorice lollipop for treating tooth decay. Pilot studies on the licorice extract in the lollipop suggested they effectively reduced said bacteria and prevented cavities. But still, more studies are needed to support this claim.

Natural Treatments for Sore Gums

Your gums can get sore if you brush your teeth too hard or wear dentures, retainers, or braces. If you’re a woman, pregnancy, hormonal changes, or menopause may also make your gums hurt. The worst-case scenario is that severe gum disease or thrush has caused your sore gums. Those are severe conditions that require urgent medical treatment.

If you are otherwise disease-free, you may use these natural treatments to relieve your gum pain:

  • Herbal Poultice

Mix powdered clove or spilanthes with warm water until the mixture becomes a paste. If you don’t have either herb, you can use powdered turmeric. Herbal poultices have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties that can help soothe sore gums. Apply the poultice directly on the affected area and wait for the pain to subside. Afterward, rinse your mouth with water.

  • Essential Oil Sprays

You can dilute any essential oil in water and transfer the solution into a spray bottle. Use about five drops of essential oil per ounce of carrier oil. Shake and spray on the affected gum without swallowing the solution.

Avoid letting an essential oil touch your skin without diluting it in a carrier oil. One example of carrier oil is sweet almond oil. As for the essential oil, try peppermint, oregano, or clove. They have the best anti-inflammatory and circulation-boosting properties.

  • Teabag

Get a tea bag and pour boiling water on it, letting it steep for five minutes. Then, take out the tea bag and let it cool. Put the teabag directly on the sore gum for at least five minutes.

Choose a tea with high astringent tannins to get the best results, like green tea, hibiscus tea, or black tea. You can also use an anti-inflammatory herb like ginger or chamomile if you don’t have a teabag.

Natural Teeth Whitening Methods

Yellow teeth can dampen your self-confidence and ruin a perfect smile. Try any of these natural methods to make it whiter:

  • Apple Cider Vinegar

Mix two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar with six ounces of water. Gurgle the solution for at least 30 seconds, and then rinse your mouth with water. But use this method sparingly because the acids in the vinegar may damage your teeth.

  • Activated Charcoal
    activated powdered charcoal

Activated charcoal can remove stains and pigments from your teeth. Rub it along your teeth in circles for about two minutes. If you have sensitive teeth, mix the activated charcoal with water and use it as a mouthwash.

Note that most natural treatments still need evidence to prove that they are as effective as their users claim. Hence, don’t put all your faith in them. Trust your dentist more.