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Last Updated on February 14, 2023
How To Use Anbesol For Toothaches? – A Helpful Guide
Anbesol is a great product for when you have a toothache or pain in another part of the mouth such as the gums. While the instructions are on the label of Anbesol when you buy it, you might still have a few questions regarding how to use it and how often to use it.
This guide will cover exactly how to use Anbesol for toothaches as well as how often to use it. Make sure to always follow the precautions so you use it correctly.
Always call or visit your dentist when you have any problems such as a reaction.
What Is Anbesol?
Anbesol can be bought over the counter. It’s a topical anesthetic that you use to relieve toothaches. You can also use it to numb dental pain that you might be having after visiting the dentist and having a filling or crown put into your mouth.
The active ingredient in Anbesol is a local anesthetic ingredient called 20% benzocaine. It’s the same ingredient that is used in dental offices before they begin the procedure. The dentist will often apply this numbing agent and then put the needle into your mouth so that you don’t feel anything.
Anbesol is just one of the over-the-counter products that contain this ingredient. You can find Anbesol with other names but the main ingredients are the same.
You can also use Anbesol for many other different things, not just toothaches. You can use it for minor dental procedures, dentures, canker sores, sore gums, and canker sores. You can also use it for the pain that comes with braces.
How To Use Anbesol For Different Kinds Of Toothaches
According to the label on the product, you can apply a pea size amount to the affected area of the mouth up to four times a day. If your dentist or doctor tells you to use it differently, then use it how they tell you to regardless of the label.
Since the instructions are vague, you might be wondering more in-depth how to use it or if you can use it more than four times a day if you use a smaller amount than a pea size.
Here are more in-depth instructions on how to use Anbesol and how to use it to make it the most effective for pain.
Using Anbesol For Tooth Pain
You can use Anbesol following these instructions when the pain is only in the tooth and not in the gums or the surrounding parts of the mouth.
These instructions are only for when the toothache starts within the tooth itself:
- Dry- You can use a cotton pad or paper towel to dry the tooth that is hurting.
- Cotton tip- Place the numbing gel on a cotton tip to make it easier to apply.
- Apply- Use the cotton tip to swab the entire tooth for at least 2 minutes to make sure the medicine is evenly distributed.
- Spit- Do not swallow or spit out the excess medicine.
- Rinse- Wait 5-10 minutes before rinsing your mouth. If you do so before 5 minutes, you might end up washing out some of the medicine and it will not be as effective.
The main part of using this medicine is to make sure that your tooth is completely dry before applying the medicine. Drying the tooth beforehand allows for the medicine to be absorbed more effectively.
Saliva can break down the ingredients of the numbing gel and make it less strong which will dilute its ability to numb your tooth. Drying your tooth makes sure there is no excess saliva in the mouth.
Using Anbesol For Gum Pain
Use this method when you’re having pain in your gums rather than in the tooth itself:
- Dry- Use a cotton pad or dry paper towel to dry the part of the gums to that you want to apply the gel.
- Cotton tip- Use a clean cotton tip and put some numbing gel on it.
- Apply- Use the cotton tip to swab the entire gum where you are feeling pain.
- Spit- do not swallow the medicine, you should always spit out the excess.
- Rinse- Wait about 5 to 10 minutes before rinsing out your mouth so that you don’t spit out the medicine and render it ineffective.
Since you’re having gum pain, you need to apply the medicine directly to the gums rather than the teeth. Some gum pain can be serious though. If it’s ongoing or doesn’t go away after a few days of using the Anbesol, see a dentist to determine if the problem needs other medicine or a dental procedure.
Precautions When Using Anbesol
Using over-the-counter products is often cheap and effective against simple issues that you might have with your teeth and gums. However, you need to be cautious when using medicines especially when you are using them before talking to a doctor.
This is why you need to always read the precautions and make sure you go to the doctor when issues arise after using the product.
Here are the main things to look out for and know about before using Anbesol.
Allergies To Anbesol
In rare cases, you might have an allergy to Anbesol. The numbing agent is benzocaine so don’t use it if you know you are allergic to this numbing agent. You also shouldn’t use it if you are allergic to procaine, butacaine, benzocaine, or other anesthetics.
Should Not Be Used Repetitively
Anbesol is not meant to be used for longer than a few days and should not be used more than four times a day. If your gum or tooth problem persists for more than a few days, it might be a good idea to go to the dentist rather than just keep trying to treat the issue at home.
You might also want to add an over-the-counter painkiller to your regimen if the pain is severe and you cannot get to the dentist’s office right away. Most products like Anbesol only provide effective pain relief for about 20 minutes. If you have ongoing pain, this might not be enough relief to help you.
Using Anbesol or any product with benzocaine can cause a rare condition called methemoglobinemia which is life-threatening. It is very dangerous because it reduces the amount of oxygen that can be delivered to your cells.
If you have methemoglobinemia, you will need to seek medical help right away. You might also experience the following symptoms:
- Lack of energy
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Shortness of breath
- Rapid heart rate
- Cyanosis, which is pale, gray, or blue skin.
The risk for the issue is children below the age of two and the elderly. According to the label of Anbesol, it should not be used for children under the age of two anyway. If your child under the age of two is having pain in their mouth, you might need to see the doctor and get a different medication for them to take.
Benzocaine is a category C medication. This means the risks are not clear in pregnant women. While animal studies have shown some risks, there have been no studies done on pregnant women to disprove or prove the risks. Since the risks are not known in pregnancy, it’s better that pregnant women do not use Anbesol.
It should only be used when the benefits outweigh the risks. You should reserve the use for only when it’s absolutely necessary. You might also want to call your doctor and ask if you can use it. Make sure they know you are pregnant before using it.
Keep in mind that a mild toothache does not usually mean the benefits outweigh the risk. You should take a medicine that is safe during pregnancy or try and deal with the toothache without medicine if possible.
Anbesol For Toothaches
Anbesol is a great medicine that is easy to use and can take away pain associated with gum and tooth pain. One of the main things to remember is that you want your tooth to be dry before using the medicine. Teeth that are wet with saliva can break down the medicine quicker and cause the medicine to be less effective.
Drying your teeth and gums can be hard, especially when your mouth is always producing more saliva. Just try and dry it with a clean paper towel or cotton pad and then apply the medicine as soon as possible.
Use Anbesol by applying it to the part of your mouth that is causing pain. Make sure to only use it four times a day since using it more can cause side effects. When in doubt about the pain in your mouth, just make sure to call your dentist and ask for an appointment. They can check the part of your mouth causing pain and give you another medicine you might need.