Society has crumbled, and you have a toothache. Surely this is the time to use great grandpappy’s whiskey. At least, that’s what you’ve probably heard. Some traditional remedies genuinely are the best choice, especially in emergencies. Unfortunately, as much as I’d like to tell you to have a shot, it’s not what you need. I’ll help you discover why, and give you some better solutions instead.
Does whiskey help a toothache? The temporary help from whiskey is more likely to add to the problem than truly help. First, most people drink whiskey instead of swabbing the area. Secondly, alcohols have sugar, which can contribute to tooth decay. Also, getting drunk might make the pain stop, but it does so by creating a different problem.
Whiskey Myths Vs. Reality
Alcohol can indeed cause a temporary numbing effect on your toothache. Sadly, that’s not the whole story. Despite generations of people using it to clean wounds and numb pain, the science behind this practice would indicate that it’s not the right idea.
Realistically, alcohol does as much damage as good or more. Any alcohol at all will have an adverse effect on the injured tissue. You don’t need to get drunk or become an alcoholic to cause harm. Not only can it thin the blood, but there’s’ more to it. Alcohol increases swelling at the site of injuries. Moreover, that sting you feel is the alcohol killing proteins in your tissue.
Resultantly, what seems helpful at first is merely a damaging distraction. Skip the whiskey, and go with a real painkiller. Or you can opt for an anti-swelling agent. Alternately, a numbing effect can help you manage pain while you seek a long term solution.
The Proper Use for Alcohol When SHTF
There are two main survival reasons to store alcohol, like whiskey, though neither is for toothaches. Sure, you can drink it. I’m not one to judge how people unwind. I like a good single malt as much as the next person. However, that has nothing to do with survival.
The first reason you should store alcohol is specific to whiskey and other spirits. Not only do they keep for incredibly long periods, but you might need a few bottles. When your other supplies are low, you can bet you aren’t alone.
Barter is King
Trading whiskey or other spirits for food, medical gear, or even tools is an excellent barter strategy. Like dentistry, distilling spirits or even making wine is an underrated skill. People will still want to drink, and they’ll need alcohol if society collapses.
Learning to haggle is essential. Travel down to mid or southern Mexico and visit the markets if you can’t afford to visit other places where haggling over the cost is standard. Practice getting a good deal with cash before you ever need to swap for your survival.
You can also find like-minded survivors and make trades with them for things you need. Plenty of preppers keep more than they need. If you can’t find anyone to trade with in your area, and you can’t travel, then try out an online barter site.
Sterilizing Saves Lives
Rather than storing whiskey for toothaches, you can focus on stocking up on denatured alcohol for sterilization. Medical tools, food surfaces, and more need to be sterile. While it may seem like it’s not a big deal, without modern cleansers, a little rubbing alcohol can make a massive difference to your survival chances.
What you should never do is put it on an open wound. When a doctor swabs your arm before giving you a shot, it’s not because it will help you heal. They do this to prevent contaminants on your skin from causing infection.
What Should You Do About Tooth Pain
While whiskey isn’t your best choice, there are plenty of useful painkillers in nature. Living without a dentist is going to be tough. Hopefully, a few will survive and offer their services. Dentistry is one of the most underestimated skills you can have when society falls apart.
Regardless of the availability of dentists, numbing pain is easy enough to achieve for yourself. You don’t need a stock of expensive painkillers to pull it off. More importantly, with the right herbs and oils, you can trade your knowledge with others as a high-value barter.
I strongly suggest getting familiar with your local plants. There’s something nearby that can help with your problem. However, some of the most effective and conventional solutions are also worth keeping around. You need to take a look at this video from Dr. Nicole Apelian to learn more in-depth information about healing with the right herbs. The information she gives is invaluable.
Numb By Nature
Dental pain is the worst. It can take you out of the action and distract you when you need to focus. You can add some essential herbs to your BOB or other emergency supplies to help numb or kill the pain. With some of the following natural remedies in your collection, you’ll be able to temporarily help yourself so you can survive long enough to fix the problem.
Basic Pain Medicine Herb Kit:
- Clove- Whole and ground clove will work in a pinch. However, it’s best if you add clove oil to a cotton ball and bite down on it.
- Cayenne- Capsaicin in ordinary cayenne pepper helps with blood flow and soft tissue pain. While some people can’t stomach the spice, you can put it directly on a sore tooth. Once the initial burn fades, so will the pain. Moreover, you can use it as much as you want.
- Tobacco- I’m not suggesting anyone take up chewing tobacco. However, it is worth noting that it has a numbing effect, which is useful. Additionally, nicotine affects the pleasure center in the brain, helping you feel calm.
- Tumeric & Black Pepper- Tumeric is known for reducing swelling. However, when you add ground black pepper, the effects are heightened. I suggest using both. Furthermore, use the pair with coconut oil and baking soda as a paste in place of your regular toothpaste for even more beneficial effects.
- Lavender- These fragrant purple flowers are good for more than bouquets and teas. Lavender oil and blossoms help reduce stress and pain. Keeping a sachet with you to smell often will help you control pain.
- Peppermint- Although peppermint and peppermint oil can help with pain and stomach upset, there’s one thing most people forget. You should never put pure peppermint essential oil on the skin. It can cause chemical burns.
- Eucalyptus- Like many of the herbs on this list, eucalyptus oil or leaves can help with pain by merely smelling it. Keep in mind; these aren’t like taking a processed pill. Not only do they take time, but they aren’t going to affect your brain and body so profoundly that you shouldn’t operate heavy machinery. That’s a good thing when life is on the line.
- Ginger- Ginger is a well known mild painkiller. Like peppermint, it will also help settle the stomach, which can be a problem with tooth pain. Furthermore, it also helps with circulation like cayenne.
- Wild Lettuce- This little known herb is probably a weed you see all the time. Though you may not think much of it, the painkilling quality of wild lettuce was used during the civil war to help soldiers who had been shot. Beware the sedative effect of this particular remedy.
- Willow Bark- If you find yourself wishing you could take an aspirin, then you’re in luck. Willow bark works in a very similar way. Additionally, it tastes about as good as BC powder, in my opinion, but I’ve used both in a pinch.
- CBD & THC- Though most people only recently became aware of the medicinal properties of hemp and marijuana, anyone who’s had either one can tell you they kill the pain. I suggest CBD for TEOTWAWKI because THC gets you’high’ which can distract you at crucial moments while the CBD won’t have that effect.
Using whiskey for a toothache is like using a hammer to pull screws out. It might work in one way, but it’s not really doing what you want. Moreover, it’s doing more damage in the process. It’s the wrong choice.
If you have nothing else, swabbing a small amount on your gum will help you cope with extreme pain while you hunt for a more practical solution. Unfortunately, it’s vital to find a better option as soon as possible. There’s nothing wrong with having a drink, but the medical value of liquor is greatly misunderstood.
Most of the positive benefits of alcohol are better served with other remedies. The exception is sterilizing your equipment.