What are the Best Foods for a Toothache?

If you haven’t had a toothache – congratulations! You are among the few and lucky. If you are currently dealing with tooth pain, we get it. It’s the worst – especially because eating has become a painful chore. If you are finding yourself asking “ What foods can I eat that won’t further irritate my toothache?” this is the blog for you.

But before we talk about food, let first determine…

What causes a toothache anyway?

A toothache is caused by the inflammation of the tooth’s central portion, called the pulp. This inflammation can be triggered by several different factors including:

  • Cavities: A common cause of tooth pain and a symptom of tooth decay. If you’re experiencing pain in only a single tooth, it’s possible it’s a cavity. Cavities from tooth decay generally occur from lack of dental care and eating poor foods with high amounts of sugar or starches
  • Infected gums: Since your gums surround your teeth, if they become infected your teeth will also experience discomfort.  
  • Abscesses: A bacterial infection can lead to an abscess in the tooth. An abscess is a ball of puss that can form inside the tooth itself.
  • Pulpitis: Another culprit of a toothache. Pulpitis inflammation of tooth tissue that contains nerves and blood. Untreated pulpitis will eventually kill your tooth.
  • Other: There are several other potential causes of toothaches including thinning tooth enamel, cracked teeth, receding gums, gum disease, a sinus infection, an impacted tooth, and even diabetes or heart disease. 

What are the symptoms of a toothache?

Obviously, mild to severe pain is the most common symptom of a toothache. See your dentist immediately if your pain increases, is consistent, or you are struggling with any of the following symptoms:

  • Fever
  • Headache 
  • Difficulty chewing 
  • Swelling of the gums 
  • Sensitivity to cold or hot food and drinks
  • Bad taste in your mouth (may be due to infection)
  • Sharp or pulsating pain from the tooth or surrounding area 

    Foods that help toothaches 

    Here’s the part you’ve been waiting for – what types of foods can you eat with tooth pain. To avoid further exacerbating your mouth pain, opt for soft foods such as…

    • Oatmeal
    • Soft fruits
    • Applesauce
    • Cottage cheese
    • Mashed potatoes
    • Puddings, custards and gelatin
    • Milkshakes and smoothies (use a spoon if pain is present using a straw)

      These examples require less chewing and are overall gentler on your teeth.

      Foods to avoid when you have a toothache

      You guessed it – there are foods that can make your toothache worse too. 

      Here's what you should stay away from:

      • Citrus 
      • Granola
      • Raw vegetables
      • Spicy and salty foods
      • Commercial mouthwashes that contain alcohol

        The name of the game is – avoid any food that will cause any further irritation to your gums, require significant amounts of pressure, or require lots of chewing. 

        Other helpful toothache tips

        • Cook foods until soft and tender
        • Cut your food into smaller pieces
        • Use a blender or food processor to breakdown food
        • Rinse your mouth with water to remove leftover food

          Final thoughts… 

          At the end of the day, no one wants to be on a tooth pain diet forever. That’s why prevention is key. Good oral hygiene including thorough teeth cleaning twice daily helps significantly lower the possibility of mouth pain and toothaches – especially if you're using an AutoBrush. The only u-shaped toothbrush clinically proven to clean teeth 27x better than traditional toothbrushes. 


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