Toothache is the most obvious problem associated with the teeth. Aspirin and paracetamol tablets are the best remedies for the pain and a visit to the dentist is wise if the pain recurs or does not go away. There are other remedies available, although since toothache often seems to occur at night or at the weekend getting hold of them might not be easy. Clove oil is an important constituent of Boots Tooth Tincture, Kilpain Toothache Tincture, Parkinsons Toothache Tincture, Kajglo Toothache Tincture, Three Flasks Tooth-Ache Solution and Touch and Go Toothache Solution. A plug of cottonwool soaked in clove oil can be inserted into the cavity of the pain-giving tooth for temporary relief. A glass of whisky will often provide considerable relief and may make sleep possible.

There are a large number of toothpastes available today, and choosing between ones which contain fluoride, strontium chloride or other substances may seem difficult. In the absence of strong clinical evidence in support of any particular brand of toothpaste, it is perhaps enough to choose a toothpaste by the same criteria as are used in the selection of other toilet articles: personal taste, price and brand loyalties are as important here as clinical claims, although the evidence suggests that toothpastes containing fluoride are worthwhile. I have not attempted to make a list of all the toothpastes which claim to offer better tooth care, nor have I listed the various tablets, mouthwashes and solutions which are said to help preserve teeth. If your dentist recommends one particular product then it may be worthwhile listening to him. In general, however, it is, I think, enough to point out that the best way to keep the teeth and gums healthy is to cut down sweet eating and brush the teeth regularly. Sugary drinks and sweets are the main reasons for the epidemic of tooth disease in young people. Personally, I would like to see restaurants reintroduce toothpicks, which are an excellent way to provide rough tooth care immediately after eating.

Infections of the gums are a common cause of bad breath or halitosis . A dentist’s advice should be sought if your gums bleed or are puffy, or if you have persistent bad breath.

There are as many products available for use by denture wearers as there are for people with their own teeth. The choice of a denture cleanser may be decided by your own dentist’s recommendations or by your own tastes. There is not one obviously superior product. A number of products are available designed to help dentures fit better or stay in position (CusbionGrip, Snug and Super Wernets, for example). If you need one of these products it may be worthwhile revisiting your dentist. Remember that the human mouth changes shape as the months and years go by and if your dentures do not fit properly you may need a new set.