From root canals to bridges and gum disease, there's no end to the myriad of oral health problems caused primarily by modern diets. Prevention is the number one way to avoid sensitive teeth, gums and of course the dentist. Besides great dental care, there are many natural herbs you can use which give your oral health the preventative and restorative medicine it needs.
1) Golden Seal: It is known to have powerful antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory effects which have made it a very popular herb for thousands of years. It used internally against a variety of ailments including colds and flus. It is also commonly used to help with cold sores and herpes lesions when made into a tea and used as a gargle or topical wash. Goldenseal has the added benefit of being known for boosting the body’s own immunity, which makes it great for any sensitivity in the gums and teeth.
2) Arnica: It is one of the best herbs to sooth the nervous system. It also helps reduce inflammation and pain and gives instant relief. It is very effective for sensitive teeth, cures wounds of the mouth and soothes the gums and inflammation. If you have sensitive teeth, apply arnica gel, that can be extracted from the plant, on the sensitive parts.
3) Myrrh: When toothaches make their presence known, a little myrrh tincture placed on the tooth can halt pain in less than 60 seconds. It has an incredible ability to heal and help cure bleeding gums while fighting the bacteria that causes gum disease and tooth decay.
4) Cinnamon: Along with cloves, cinnamon is one of the most potent antioxidants in the world. It kills the bacteria in the mouth and when consumed along with cloves, is considered one of the best remedies for sensitive teeth. Boil cinnamon with cloves and gargle twice a day. You can also consume two to three grams of the bark regularly, as it is one of the ideal remedies to prevent tooth decay. If you are to maximize the medicinal value of cinnamon it must be ceylon and non-irradiated which will be labeled as such. When you experience pain in the gums, it is also an effective pain killer.
5) Neem: Neem is a natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, anti-histamine, anti-viral and anti-microbial. It was traditionally used as a natural toothbrush and is regaining popularity. More research is showing its relevance in helping reduce plaque, prevent cavities, gum disease, and freshen breath. It is easy to add powdered Neem to your usual toothpaste, but always remember that the bark is more potent than the leaf itself.
6) Thyme: Thyme is an incredibly potent yet simple herb affecting multiple systems in the body and capable of treating dozens of diseases. It is usually used to improve the immune system, but a tea made out of the herb is highly beneficial for mouth disorders. Mix thyme with sage and make a tea. Have one cup in the morning and one in the evening for a better and faster cure. Thyme kills germs in the mouth and refreshes the breath and at the same time reduces sensitivity of the teeth.
7) Tea Tree: Tea-tree is one of the most powerful plants effective against dangerous bacteria. It is one of the best solutions to keep fungus at bay and very effective at reducing the throbbing pain associated with gum disease. The oil of Tea tree is very useful in overcoming the problem of receding gums and teeth sensitivity. however care must always be taken to avoid ingesting it.
John Summerlyis nutritionist, herbologist, and homeopathic practitioner. He is a leader in the natural health community and consults athletes, executives and most of all parents of children on the benefits of complementary therapies for health and prevention.