Dental pain! A trip to the dentist is commonly associated with a painful memory of a prior dental experience. The throbbing, swelling, bleeding, and aching pain vividly stands out in your memory. This typically does not occur during semi-annual cleanings or simple cavity fillings, but when the dental procedure involves an extraction, surgery or treatment for a dental emergency (most commonly from an accident with a blow to the mouth or head). This is when there is real value from using arnica.
Healing energy normally flows through the nervous and circulatory systems in the body. Under normal circumstances, this process occurs naturally. However, a trauma disturbs this normal flow and can create a visual sign (blood) as well as a very real sensation of pain. This is common to dental trauma.
When a dental procedure creates this type of trauma, the body typically creates inflammation as a natural defense mechanism to the trauma. The inflammation, although unsightly and painful, is just part of the natural healing process of the body.
A standard pharmaceutical approach to dealing with inflammation and pain is by using anti-inflammatory (examples include over-the-counter drugs like aspirin, ibuprofen or naproxen) and pain-medications, like codeine. The anti-inflammatory medicine has both pain-killing response as well as the anti-inflammatory activity. Pain medication acts only on the brain, deceiving our perception of localized pain while doing essentially nothing to actually help heal the wound.
Arnica, on the other hand, effectively helps the body to overcome the trauma through the natural mechanisms already in the body to reduce the pain and inflammation, rather than by using man-made chemicals.
A good suggestion is to consider arnica for all dental traumas. The remedy will help the body control the inflammation and the perception of pain, naturally working with the body. Taking arnica after a dental trauma can help speed the healing process overall.
The most effective dosing with the arnica is to take a dose:
1. The evening before the procedure,
2. While waiting in the dental office immediately PRIOR to the procedure,
3. Immediately AFTER the procedure,
4. Then continue to dose the remedy every 6 hours AND as needed.
4.1. These additional as needed doses are practical to address potential break-thru pain that would normally be addressed by taking the “as needed” dose of the
pain or anti-inflammatory medication.
*IMPORTANT! Medications may be prescribed with specific dosing instructions AND/OR “as needed”. Arnica can ALWAYS be taking “on top” of any prescribed regime,without causing complication or interruptions with the prescribed treatment plan .However it is always best to include your practitioner on YOUR treatment plans. Never change the plans the dentist gives you without consulting with the prescriber.
Dr. Peter Wannigman
Micro-doses of the plant are used to make homeopathic Arnica. In this form, Arnica restores health with no side effects and is safe for children, adults, pregnant women, and seniors. Like other homeopathic medicines, Arnica has been regulated as a drug by the FDA since 1938 and manufactured according to the guidelines in the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States. Homeopathic Arnica has no reported drug interactions and is safe for individuals who require other medications.
In recent years many research studies have been carried out to explore the effectiveness of Homeopathic Arnica. In medical clinics and hospitals, physicians are turning to Arnica to relieve the soreness and bruising that can follow accidents and surgery. Especially helpful after orthopedic and plastic surgery, Arnica relieves inflammation and bruising and speeds recovery. Experts in emergency medicine recommend it to reduce pain and mend tissues associated with traumatic injuries. Fitness coaches rely on it to ease the soreness that comes from overexertion and muscle sprain.
Homeopathic Arnica is available in two forms: Topical gels and creams that can be applied to the skin and medicated pellets that dissolve under the tongue. For minor, local complaints, the topical form is recommended. For more severe general symptoms, the pellet form is more effective.
Herbal preparations of Arnica are not the same as the homeopathic medicines made from the plant. In fact, they are very different. In herbal form, the amount of plant extract is substantially higher. This can cause adverse effects when taken internally. Home brewed teas and tinctures can cause dizziness, diarrhea, irregular heartbeat and even death. Topical herbal applications can cause reactions as well. For this reason, professional practitioners recommend Arnica only when used in homeopathic form. Just take care not to apply the cream or gel to broken skin where it can cause irritation.
Keep a supply of Arnica in your home first aid kit for bruising or soreness associated with:
Accidents and injuries
Wounds with Swelling
Surgery (especially Orthopedic and Plastic)
Dr. Lauri Grossman, DC CCH RSHOM(NA)