Dental pain, can’t get dentist appointment? Tried acupuncture?

Dental pain is a prevalent issue worldwide that can cause discomfort, difficulty in chewing, and general symptoms such as headaches or earaches. Dental pain can also have a significant impact on sleep, school or work performance, and overall productivity, often necessitating a visit to the dentist for consultation. However, acupuncture therapy has emerged as a potential solution for alleviating dental pain.

Research studies have shown that acupuncture therapy can reduce the need for analgesic medication in various types of pain, including dental pain.

Several studies have evaluated the effectiveness of acupuncture in relieving dental pain. A review that included 16 such studies found that the majority of trials indicated that acupuncture is effective in dental pain relief. The review concluded that acupuncture can be an effective option for relieving dental pain.

A more recent systematic review evaluated the efficacy of acupuncture compared to other pain-relieving approaches in the treatment of acute dental pain. The review analyzed 11 randomized controlled trials with 668 patients who reported on the efficacy of acupuncture on postoperative acute dental pain. Patients who received acupuncture showed lower pain scores postoperatively compared to those who received sham acupuncture. The results suggest that acupuncture has the potential to improve acute dental pain intraoperatively and postoperatively, as well as enhancing the efficacy of local anesthesia.

Another study investigated the use of acupuncture in reducing the intensity of acute dental pain in patients waiting for emergency dental care. The study involved 120 patients who received one session of acupuncture. Pain reduction was observed in all 120 patients, indicating that acupuncture analgesia could be a technical adjunct to pain control in patients with acute dental pain.

In summary, dental pain is a prevalent issue that can have a significant impact on an individual's quality of life. Acupuncture therapy has emerged as a promising solution for alleviating dental pain, and several studies have shown that acupuncture is effective in reducing the need for analgesic medication and improving postoperative acute dental pain. Therefore, individuals suffering from dental pain may consider acupuncture therapy as a potential option for pain relief..

Moritz Müller et al Jpn Dent Sci Rev. 2023; 59: 114–128.
E Ernst, M H Pittler Br Dent J. 1998 May 9;184(9):443-7

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