Head to your spice rack and grab some ground cloves for gum pain. In a small bowl, place a good pinch of ground cloves and a drop or two of water, just enough to make a paste. Rub the paste on your sore gums, and they should feel better right away. Cloves contain eugenol, a natural anesthetic and antiseptic.
Crunch on Crudité
Bring on the carrots, celery, and broccoli! To keep your gums healthy, be sure to eat at least one raw, crunchy vegetable per day. It will massage and clean the gums; plus, you’ll be on your way to your five fruits and vegetables a day.
It may surprise you to learn that you can brush your teeth and gums with aloe vera gel! Just make sure it’s 100 percent pure aloe gel with no icky additives. It’s not abrasive like regular toothpaste, and it can help tame gum inflammation and soothe sensitive teeth. Plus, it’s an antiseptic and can reduce gum bleeding. Ask your dentist if aloe vera might be a good option for you.
Brush with Baking Soda. . .
Once a week, brush along your gumline with baking soda. It kills gingivitis-causing bacteria, cleans and whitens teeth, and freshens your breath! Win-win! (If you’re prone to sensitive teeth, it’s a good idea to check with your dentist before brushing with baking soda because it can be abrasive.)
. . . And Rinse with Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide can help reduce plaque—among its innumerable other uses! To make a gum-friendly mouthwash, mix together one tablespoon hydrogen peroxide with one tablespoon water. Swish for 30 seconds, then spit. (Never swallow hydrogen peroxide!)
If you have a bit more time on your hands (and some sage leaves), you can make a sage rinse that’s great for sore gums. Chops up a few leaves (three to four teaspoons), and place in a mug. Pour hot water over the leaves, and allow to steep for at least ten minutes. Strain the liquid and place in the refrigerator. When it’s cool, you can use it as an antiseptic rinse after brushing. Sage is a powerful astringent, so it will bring quick relief to inflamed gums.
Both black and green tea can boost gum health by reducing plaque. Tea contains polyphenols that can essentially “scrub” bacteria from your teeth. Green tea is thought to be particularly effective. Now just don’t go adding cavity-causing sugar!