Advice on what to do when you can't or don't want to see a dentist
8 tips for building up or hardening a decayed tooth (or temporarily stopping it up)
As mentioned on About this site, I feel my teeth would be much better off today had I been forced to do without a dentist while being taught about ways of becoming "dentally self-sufficient".
Once a tooth has been strongly damaged (much of it in my and some others' view due to the very dental treatments supposedly "restoring" it, for detailed reasons see Drilling & filling teeth: an unwise choice? On risks, damages and dangers) I feel that (spiritual intervention apart), their complete repair will only be accomplished when and if strong and consistent proactive measures are implemented to strengthen teeth and gums8 and persistently eliminate the causes that would otherwise likely lead to their continued gradual erosion and destruction.7
Here now a list of suggestions how to tackle the repair of one's own teeth in case you prefer (or have to) try doing without dental emergency treatment and/or "proper" dental work, i.e. aim beyond just lessening or temporarily numbing the pain before rushing to the next available dentist. (For those just wishing to temporarily deal with a hole, simply skip to Temporary fixes.)
Apparently, both dietary and "energetic" measures and approaches have allowed people to fix cavities without a dentist and to get rid of caries without fillings. Following any of these suggestions is of course done at your own risk since I can and will only take responsibility for my own body and health, and comes with no guarantee, see Disclaimer.
Step 1: Get rid of the toothache, naturally
As the first step towards becoming dentally self-sufficient, various simple but effective procedures can be used to stop tooth pain, see Natural, holistic & home dental remedies for toothache & other dental problems.
To rule out the very rare possibility your toothache is an indicator of some non-dental (potentially serious) illness, you may also wish to read Dental glossary: toothache, dental and gingival pain: definitions and causes.
Step 2: Work at building up (hardening) the tooth softened by erosion (caries)
The next and most important step is effecting a long-term toothache cure by working to help one's teeth remineralize, i.e. to form a new hardened enamel, and thus restore them to functionality (for background explanations, see Demineralisation - remineralisation). Such remineralization or "glazing over" of teeth is likely most reliably achieved by a dietary change or adaptation5: according to the observations and in-depth studies effected by eminent dental health researcher and dentist Dr. Weston A. Price DDS as well as other dentists such as Dr. George W. Heard, for teeth to be healthy and/or maintain or regain a measure of health, they need to receive nutrition rich in minerals, trace elements, vitamins and various phytonutrients combined with the avoidance of all refined and other damaging foodstuffs, especially sugar and white flour. The health-giving elements are particularly found in raw organic edibles, i.e. fresh and unprocessed food, sunshine for vitamin D production (required for proper assimilation of calcium into the dental structure), etc. Make particularly sure to get enough tooth- and bone-friendly vitamin K2, A, D and C and the full mineral and trace element spectrum. Many more details on rebuilding or strengthening teeth via diet at Nutrition.
Should the teeth initially be too sensitive to chew or allow contact with food, juicing as well as blending food to a soft mush in a blender and drinking/ingesting it through a straw may help (while avoiding drinking or eating any substances that might irritate the tooth such as hot or cold food items). It is important, however, that teeth do get into contact with well-chewed natural food to allow them to directly extract minerals and whatever else they require to enable their natural regeneration via your saliva - more at the must-read page Tooth remineralisation & demineralisation, saliva & pH: (at least) 6 major prerequisites for dental health and stopping & reversing tooth decay.
Combined with brushing & cleaning and getting sunlight (or vitamin D supplements in wintertime, vitamin D being required for proper assimilation of calcium into the dental structure), a regimen rich in tooth-friendly minerals, trace elements and vitamins should allow the teeth to properly (or at the very least sufficiently) remineralize, i.e. newly form a hardened enamel or surface to allow the tooth to be (near-)normally used.
Also refer to Herbs and plants for strengthening teeth and gums, Miscellaneous tips for keeping or restoring healthy teeth and gums, Products for remineralizing teeth and enamel (most of these are applied from the outside to add minerals to teeth) and Herbal, plant-derived and similar products for teeth and gums (some of these are very inexpensive).
Please note: if the pulp ("nerve") of a tooth has been killed and is not "revived", i. e. the tooth is no longer nourished from the inside, the tooth will likely crumble (erode) over time. This can take many years and can happen both with the tooth filled and unfilled7. The major reason for dead or dying pulp is dental treatment, see Drilling & filling teeth: an unwise choice?.
Step 3: Clean your teeth properly & detoxify your mouth
The importance of cleaning teeth can be seen from the fact that "renegade" dentist Dr. Nara centered his whole approach to permanently healing and protecting teeth from caries around religiously applied proper cleaning measures. Dr. Nara reaped resounding successes with many of his patients, see his book How To Become Dentally Self-Sufficient.
To clean one's teeth, it's very important to use natural non-toxic cleaning agents or oral care products. For one powerful example among several showing what switching from conventional toothpaste to a more natural approach can do in terms of healing cavities (as well as serious gum disease/periodontitis), read this Dramatic tooth decay cure testimonial (salt water brushing, waterpik [oral irrigator] and dry brushing have healed cavities where fluoride toothpaste failed).
More on keeping your teeth clean as well as DIYable oral detoxification at the Dental Care and Oral Hygiene section (while oil pulling seems to be a potent way of pulling toxins from your entire mouth, likely the most powerful way of effectively and permanently reducing caries bacteria in your mouth is using xylitol sugar for rinsing and toothbrushing, highly recommended!).
Step 4: Learn about energy healing approaches and apply them
EFT and Donna Eden's Energy Medicine approach1 are two modalities which have been successfully used to address and heal both toothache and cavities. According to Donna Eden, acupressure has been used to eliminate both toothache and even heal the tooth (more at Energetic Toothache Remedies: Acupressure). Her landmark book Energy Medicine features charts showing the entire treatment for cavities and toothache as well as a chart showing which tooth is energetically linked to which organ via energy meridians.2
Step 5: Calm your emotions, use your mind constructively - and Visualize!
See Psychology for how stress relief, emotions and mental factors can contribute to dental healing and regeneration (or the opposite). That stress does play a role both in caries resistance and susceptibility also appears clear from in-depth research done by Drs. Steinman & Leonora on the dentinal fluid transport system.
For some particularly empowering inspiration, read this brilliant tooth healing real-life testimonial achieved by simply visualising the tooth being healthy and healed!
Step 6: Get inspired by others
Healing Teeth Naturally has an entire section devoted to impressive natural tooth and gum healing testimonials.
Step 7: Consider fasting
Some dramatic toothache and dental healings have been achieved with fasting. See On the effects of fasting on the health of teeth and gums and Testimonial: toothache, tooth decay and gum pockets naturally healed and reversed via fasting and good nutrition.
Step 8: Last but far from least: consider uropathy
See Urine therapy for the healing of teeth and gum problems (believe me, it is powerful and once you have actually overcome your resistance to it, you are unlikely to want to miss out on its benefits ever again).
Addendum: What to do with deep "holes" and When I personally have seen a dentist
I generally avoid dentists since I don’t wish to carry any fillings, crowns, inlays or partials full of foreign materials, hazardous metals and/or toxic chemicals in my mouth with their possible or proven health hazards such as amalgam mercury and other harmful metals leaching into the body, radioactive contamination etc.3 The simple act of drilling into a tooth constitutes trauma to the tooth thus affected, comparable to an operation performed on another part of the physical body. So for about ten years now I have self-treated any occurring tooth problems (they are few and far between today and only follow on the heels of dietary mistakes in the form of refined sugar and white flour).
If like myself you should choose (or perhaps have) to go the whole hog and leave cavities (including deeper holes) unfilled7, you are likely to get food particles frequently stuck in the latter (a minor inconvenience in my view). That point is also where I did allow one exception in my “dentist-free zone” policy: I had a tooth with a very deep cavity where the filling had fallen out. Normally, I leave such teeth alone, allowing them to form a new hardened enamel layer via proper diet and cleaning. In that particular case, the cavity was so deep and “convoluted” that it was impossible to keep clean, with food rests continually getting trapped in the inside passage and starting to rot and cause pain. So I had this one cavity sealed by a plastic filling4.
The other option (which I only recently learned about) is of course the above-referenced visualisation technique which has allowed at least some people to refill their own tooth cavities by simple visualisation (see this very impressive tooth healing testimonial) as well as the super-easy tip for a simple DIY "tooth filling" listed below!
Those who for any reason wish or need to have their tooth holes filled but can't immediately get (or afford) a dentist appointment may find products such as Dentemp O.S. Temporary Tooth Filling useful which are designed to provide a temporary dental "restoration" (for instance after the previous one has fallen out) and which will stay in place for a while, allowing you to chew food and brush your teeth. Easy to apply and patch up (or renew) in case the filling starts to chip, this type of filling apparently can tide you over for several weeks (and maybe longer). You should find a temporary tooth filling product at drugstores/pharmacies and similar outlets, and of course online, see for instance Temparin Filling Material for Fillings & Crowns.
In this context, I've also seen a note that "[v]egetarian-source calcium powder, packed around an infected tooth, and even packing inside the decayed areas of teeth (after they are properly cleaned) has sometimes assisted in teeth naturally healing themselves or at least retarded the decay."
Similarly, you can make slippery elm (Ulmus rubra) powdered bark into a paste with water using mortar and pestle and fill a cavity with it. Apparently, slippery elm bark among other things provides tooth-friendly calcium phosphate. Another suggestion is using finely ground comfrey root mixed with some antibacterial herb or tincture (myrrh, rosemary essential oil and many others - for more inspiration see the entire section Natural, holistic & home dental remedies for toothache & other dental problems).
Should you have it available,you might also wish to try beeswax - which it would appear is a time-honoured DIY dental filling :-).6
A super easy tip for a DIY "tooth filling" (sent in by a site visitor) is described in the following: "I have a large cavity in my sideways tooth. It used to cause a lot of pain before. I had tried so many things .... What works now is that I put a temporary filling of cotton and now I can eat without any pain. Then I can take out the cotton whenever I want and clean out the cavity with sodium bicarbonate mixed water. I also use a water irrigator to help keep it clean and can put a new cotton in there. I use a dental pick to hold the small cotton ball and place it in the cavity. This solution has helped me to eat pain-free and also prevented any food from going and getting stuck in my cavity.
I would like to mention a caution however regarding the cotton. It works well to stop food particles entering my sideways tooth and stopped pain there as well.
Recently, I tried putting a cotton on my upper left tooth just behind the canine, and the cavity entry was smaller so I had to push the ball in with a dental pick. That may have caused too much pressure on the tooth as when I was eating something, that upper tooth with a cavity broke. So when pushing the cotton ball in, one has to be careful not to put too much pressure as that may cause the tooth to weaken maybe.
For my wisdom teeth at the back however, the cotton just easily goes in without pressure since the hole is so big. It relieves me from pain when eating and keeps food particles out thankfully."
1 As laid out in her (highly recommended) book of the same name, Energy Medicine.
2 Also compare "Energetic" toothache remedies.
3 For numerous reasons and details, see the Conventional Dentistry section, particularly On dental fillings or "restorations", Drilling and filling teeth: an unwise choice? Many reasons for avoiding conventional invasive dental treatment etc..
4 Compare however Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt's notes on plastic fillings.
5 (setting aside for the moment any psychological, emotional, mental or spiritual healing approaches for which there certainly is a place and time as well, even in the field of dental healing and regeneration)
7 Compare What happens if cavities are left untreated? On the "dangers" of tooth decay and dental infections not treated by a dentist.
8 One of several powerful examples of such proactive self-treatment crowned by success can be found under Tooth regeneration achieved via Gerson diet detoxification: a testimonial of decayed teeth & enamel rebuilding themselves.