Tooth Abscess
Natural Remedies

How to Use a Tea Bag for a Tooth Abscess

Jan 14, 2018

A simple black tea bag can be an effective natural remedy for a tooth abscess. The properties in black tea fight infection and reduce pain and inflammation.

How to Use a Black Tea Bag to Relieve Pain and Reduce Infection

  • Simply wedge a warm, wet tea bag against the gum and surround the tooth.
  • Keep the tea bag in place for 20-30 minutes
  • Repeat the procedure every two hours during the day.
  • Do not sleep with a tea bag in your mouth; it is a choking risk.

If you have ever experienced an abscessed tooth, you know how painful it can be. This black tea home remedy begins to eliminate the infection while quickly relieving the pain and inflammation.

Let us know if you've tried the tea bag treatment for a toothache. Continue scrolling down to learn how the tea bag cure worked for other Earth Clinic readers.

20 User Reviews  

5 star (18) 
4 star (2) 
Share your thoughts with our readers
Write a review

Posted by Heather (Ontario) on 09/05/2017
5 out of 5 stars

I found your page while frantically searching for a quick natural remedy for my abscessed tooth. I used the tea bag remedy and it worked. AMAZING!

Posted by Kate (Scotland) on 07/22/2017
5 out of 5 stars

I had a large tooth abscess which was getting larger very quickly, causing swelling to my face and a lot of discomfort. I tried gargling salt water a few times which slightly helped but then the abscess would grow more. I read about the black teabag trick and applied a warm teabag to the abscess for around 15 minutes. During this time I pressed and squeezed the bag against my sore gum.

To my complete shock when I removed the teabag it was covered in blood and pus which it had extracted from my mouth. The abscess was totally drained, swelling reduced quickly and next day the absess was completely gone.

I did not require any other treatment at all- literally 15 mins of he teabag had cured my abscess. Please please try this if you have a similar problem, I can recommend highly enough. Natural remedy are the best! :)

Posted by Channy 34 (Pa) on 02/26/2017
5 out of 5 stars

Had a really big abscess, and HAD to go to the ER because I was in so much pain and so swollen I looked like a bullfrog. Anyway, they put me on strong I.v. antibiotics and painkillers immediately and sent me up to get an x-ray done. Doctor looked at them and said that thing is like the size of a golf ball, but it's more a job for a dentist than us. Then she whispered to put a black tea bag on it when I got home....

Got home, dampened down a black tea bag, and put it around my tooth for about 20 mins. Got mad that it wasn't working (lol, ) and took it out. 5 minutes later my mouth erupted in abscess liquid disgustingness! It was the worst thing I've ever tasted, and I was spitting that stuff out for, it seems like, forever, but holy cow does it work.

Replied by Cathey
Swansboro, Nc

I have a dental bridge that is very old but don't have insurance to see the dentist. I started with a terrible toothache last night and took numerous doses of ibuprofen. Got up this morning and my face is swollen under my left eye and face/tooth area extremely painful. I am trying the teabag....praying it gets under the opening of the bridge to the infection. Will update you with results. Thank you all for sharing your experiences.

Replied by Mmsg
Somewhere, Europe

Cathay, besides whatever else you are doing, you can try rinsing often with diluted salt water.

Replied by Isabel

I would use oregano oil just put it direct on the tooth 3 times a day and on the bottom of your feet before going to bed, I did that for 3 days when I was schedule to have a root canal done that was 4 yrs ago, you have to mix oregano oil with olive oil.

Replied by Cathey
Swansboro, Nc

A friend gave me 5 days of amoxicillian 500 mg. I took 2 on Monday morning and 1 every six hours (this is the 3rd day today). I tried the teabag, hot water soaks even tried ACV but no relief. Face is still very swollen. Back to putting the warm teabag on gum around tooth this morning but am wondering how will this infection come out? I am flat broke and know a dentist won't take me. Any info you can give me will be greatly appreciated. For two days I had a fever of 102 to 103 which seems to have broken. Help!!

Replied by Steve

Try DMSO 20% mixed with colloidal silver 80%. The DMSO will cause the silver to penetrate underneath the bridge and kill the infection. Swish for 20min and spit it out. Repeat until infection is gone.

Replied by Kt

Dear Cathey,

It sounds like the teeth are abscessed. You could try holding a garlic clove between your teeth until the burning stops. Garlic is a natural antibiotic. There are several encouraging posts here on EC about using a garlic clove for a tooth abscess. In fact, it was my first search and successful remedy from here.

Getting a waterpik waterflosser would help keep debris and slivers of food from getting caught under the the crowns. This should be done after every time you eat. Since the bridge is old this could have been going on for a long time so it's going to take awhile to heal. After you floss, swish with a cap full of peroxide with a little water for two minutes. Oil pulling three times an hour has been recommended here and would also help until that infection is gone. Good luck!


Posted by Logan (Us) on 01/30/2017
4 out of 5 stars

Warm tea bag pulled some of the infection... Still painful but released the infection pressure.... Broken tooth exposed nerve.. Not in position to pay for a dentist... I have chronic epilepsy also and that's part of reason for broken teeth... Thank u for this remedy... My wife told me about it and I thought no way this will work but I have to give props to her, she was right.

Posted by Joe (Ralph) on 12/28/2016
5 out of 5 stars

I've tried anything & everything to make the awful tooth pain to go away. I can handle pain pretty good, but toothache pain is another story! So, late this evening my mother ask me have I put a wet tea bag on it yet & I said no ma'am & kept put orajel max and other liquids similar on the affected area. I took 2-3 Otc meds to help ease the pain, & nothing.

So, about 2 hrs later I got get a wet tea bag & place it in my mouth around the tooth & after about 5 mins I notice the pain easing. After about 15 mins it was feeling a lot better. I left it on for another 15 mins for about 30 mins total!!! When I removed the teabag the swelling had gone way down and the pain was gone!

I fell asleep for about 4 hrs and woke up in a little pain and placed the teabag back on the area again. Once again in 5-7 mins I notice relief! I then repeat the same thing as before but this time leaving the teabag in my mouth and around the tooth for 45-50 mins! I noticed a little blood and puss this time on the teabag! So, this works!!! I taste a bit nasty but it's nothing compared to the pain I was in!!!

Posted by Robin (Ohio) on 09/25/2016
4 out of 5 stars

I have been battling with a couple abscesses on my top right gum for almost 2 weeks now. I had read about using a tea bag to help with the pain and extraction of the pus and blood. Today I finally tried it. My gum feels so much better already! I'm going to do it 2 more times today and for the rest of the week. Thank you for publishing this remedy.

Posted by Cherrygirl5496 (Spokane, Wa) on 09/05/2016
5 out of 5 stars

Yes, the tea bag works 100%. Last night I was in so much pain I was seriously thinking about heading to the ER. I couldn't take it anymore. I thought OK, if this teabag thing doesn't work then I'm going in. I wet a black tea teabag and placed it on my gums and around the tooth that was causing the toothache. It started to relieve the pain right away. I laid down with the teabag still in place and fell asleep. I woke up about 4 hours later and was pain free. I took the tea bag out to rinse it and noticed that even without it there I wasn't in pain. It's been about an hour or so and I'm still pain free. This WORKS! It will get you by until you can get into your dentist. I tried just about everything I could think of last night and nothing worked like the teabag did.

Posted by Baern (San Antonio, Tx) on 07/27/2016
5 out of 5 stars

My rear left molar gets infected often. I cannot afford dental work and am not in a situation to easily obtain antibiotics, so I did some reading, tried this, and this is how it worked out. I want to start off by admitting that I'm a smoker and my gums would make a dentist cry. That said...

I swished with warm salt water first, and then steeped a Bigelow black teabag in boiled, hot water for 3 minutes, as if I was actually making a normal cup. I dumped the tea out (yuck) and put the bag in the back of my mouth and chewed down on it. I watched an episode of a TV show to shift my focus from the bag while spitting out the tea (I hate tea) juice mixed with my saliva every once in a while. The worst of the pain subsided for me after about 5 minutes but I kept it on there for a half hour. The swelling went down and the pain was gone. The second time I did this, I felt a tight pinch on my gum and when I took out the bag, some puss and yuck had collected. I'm assuming the bag drew out the nasty or I tore it off after pulling it out. Either way, each session made the area more free of debris and yuck.

At night, I did the same thing but swished with warm chamomile tea afterward and lightly chewed on the bag. Chamomile has analgesic properties and is an anti-inflammatory, so that worked out well AND I was able to get a full night's sleep after chugging a cup of the stuff after swishing. When I woke up, the pain was still gone and the swelling didn't come back until a few hours into my day. Basically, you just find a combination of whatever works for you, be it garlic, clove oil, black tea, peppermint, etc and keep at it every 4-6 hours until you can see a doctor.

To summarize my personal method:

1. Swish and gurgle with salt water or hydrogen peroxide (if you can stand it) to get the grunt of the gunk out.

2. Clamp on steeped bag for a half hour.

3. Drink hot peppermint tea (day) or hot chamomile tea (night) afterward for the extra boost.

4. Take it easy with your toothbrush throughout the day and ensure you sterilize it after each use to negate putting infection right back in your mouth.

5. Repeat 1-3, as needed, every 4-6 hours.

For me, the infection went away after a week but that was just me, I am by no means a doctor, so take my case as anecdotal at best. Again, I'm a smoker so my body takes longer to heal and I cut back while I had the infection. If you're a smoker, try to smoke less when you have a tooth infection.

Heed my warning: This is just a bandaid. Your tooth is still impacted and a breeding ground for bacteria to collect in. If you have an impacted tooth or any gum disease, you need to see a dentist asap because the infection will definitely keep coming back. You do NOT want the infection in your bone or worse: travel to your brain.

Posted by Edd G. (Monroe, La) on 07/04/2016
5 out of 5 stars

I had a tooth extraction 7 days ago--and it got infected. Suffered pain for 7 days. Tried everything drug store had for pain but nothing worked. Finally tried tea bags --amazing results--it works--within 1 hour my pain started going away.

Just put on where the pain is and use 2-3 bags over 2-4 hrs - will cure swelling and pain.

Posted by Julie (Champlin, Minn) on 06/25/2016
5 out of 5 stars

Had a abscess in pain for 3 days, I was taking penicillin and Tylenol + ibuprofen . Would only last 2 hours, in pain the rest of the time. Client told me try tea bag. Could not believe the difference!! Had no pain last night but woke up this morning with pain used the tea bags again, amazingly it worked again . Still swollen but slowly going down.

Posted by Beachbaybie (Asheville, Nc) on 06/24/2016
5 out of 5 stars

In response to the black tea and peppermint tea bags! They drew the infection and I no longer look like I have an egg stuck in my cheek/jaw! The pain is minimal, there is still swelling and pain but relief. I will continue and start putting garlic on it and hopefully get a good night's sleep! Thanks everyone! Whew.

Posted by Tom (Wi) on 05/24/2016
5 out of 5 stars

Tea bag treatment for tooth abscess WORKS! I thought of going to the emergency room last night because the wisdom tooth pain was so bad.

I used a little warm tap water on a black tea bag, folded it in half (long ways) and placed it on top of the tooth and waited. Within a half hour the pain wasn't so bad within the hour I was saying Thank you! Did it again in the morning for a hour and all I can say is do it, you have nothing to lose but that Dam tooth ache.

Thanks again for the posts.

Posted by Julie (Indiana) on 05/11/2016
5 out of 5 stars

I just wanted to let you know that I had a horrible, throbbing lower rear tooth that had been bothering me for about a week! I think it was caused from getting a popcorn kernel stuck between my teeth in the gums! My tooth & gums felt really sore, but it caused my lower jaw to ache too. I took ibuprofin, tried the salt rinse and the hydrogen peroxide rinse too, but the pain would come back. I finally tried the tea bag treatment, and let it sit there for over a 1/2 hour each time. I did this about 4 times yesterday and a couple times today. It feels so much better! I couldn't believe it! It must've got the infection out of that tooth or gums. I'm going to keep doing it until it feels 100% better! The black tea bag treatment really works!!! Thanks for the information about doing it!!

Posted by Genxmum (Usa) on 03/22/2014
5 out of 5 stars

I was in horrible pain. Molar and gum inflamed and swollen. I tried several other remedies mentioned but none of them worked. I read that a tea bag might help so used a warm wet black tea bag against the gum under that tooth. Right away it started feeling better. Used the tea bags about 3-4 times a day for at least 30 minutes but tried to keep it in longer. It reduced the pain & swelling till it was gone over a few days. In no way should this replace a dentist visit but if it's middle of the night and you're in tooth pain this just might help remove the pain until you can see the dentist.

Posted by Theresed (New York City, Ny ) on 09/06/2013
5 out of 5 stars

I had a pretty nasty abscess in my gums right above a bridge I've had for a couple of years. It started off as a hard lump above the bridge and after 3 days the left side of my check was swollen, my ears and head hurt and I had a black left eye. I wasn't able to get to the dentist so I came to this site which has helped me before. Yesterday I placed a Chai Vanilla (for taste reasons only) teabag (dry) in my mouth at an hour at a time for 3 hours total. Around 10pm I placed another teabag in my mouth took some melatonin in the hopes of falling asleep. An hour later the abscess ruptured and some yellow, foul smelling pus along with lots of blood came out. I can't even tell you the immediate relief that I felt. It's now the next afternoon; I have no toothache, headache or ear ache. The swelling is pretty much gone. The side of my gum aches but not terribly. I plan to place another dry teabag in my mouth to make sure I've gotten all of the pus out. This really really works.

Replied by Haunya Raup
Williamsport Pa

Thanks for the tip. I am having thr same issue but was using a heated tea bag and it isn't working.

Replied by Candice

Did the pus come from the tooth or gum?

Replied by Scott
British Columbia
5 out of 5 stars

I was in horrible pain when I read this and going down the list trying all I could (having a lot of experience in this area already) but I was desperate Id tried clove oil, garlic, onion, orajel the list goes on n on, nothing was working as it was an infection under a tooth the pressure was causing pain and felt like my tooth was much higher than it was supposed to be. I used the teabag and after a while it subsided then a bunch of pus shot up from between the tooth and gum the relief was instant.

Later it started to swell again (a few days later) so I lanced the gum to create a relief point an since then Ive been drawing the infection out until I can afford the dentist app.. thank you :)