Clinical Cases

Revisiting: The Terrible Tooth

Shanas th birthday different pose
Written by Elaine Lewis

Elaine gives the answer to last month’s quiz.

Did anyone miss last month’s quiz? Really? I’m surprised because like most of my tooth cases, it was soooooo interesting!

OK, here it is again:


Shana, what are we doing?

Shana's 18th birthday different pose

It’s time for the quiz, mom!

Again? Already?


Where does the time go?

Who’s our patient of the month?

Shana, as you know, we’re in hard times. There is a lack of everything nowadays–a lack of jobs, a lack of men who are interested in me, and yes, a lack of patients! Luckily, I have had, yet again, another dental abscess!

Mom, again with the dental abscess? People are going to the dentist for that!

Well, Shana, then “people” are making a big mistake, because all the dentist can do is prescribe an antibiotic which may or may not work, but which will surely upset their stomach and cost an arm and a leg! Besides, my story is sooooooooo interesting as usual!

More interesting than homework?  Because I suddenly remembered I have homework to do!

Fine! Waste your time doing homework when you could be learning something!  Now, where was I….. Ah yes, It was a beautiful day in Philadelphia, the birds were singing, there was a dead spider in the doorway….

That’s because you killed it!

Shana, don’t interrupt Mommy when she’s fondly reminiscing. So, despite being surrounded by the joys of city life in the dead of winter, I was able to focus on only one thing, namely–it’s back! The dental abscess, it’s back!  Does anyone remember the Apis “Toothiness” quiz from November ’08?

No one remembers it, Mom!!

Well off course they do, Shana! Here’s part of it:

Now, as I’m sure everyone remembers from the July ezine…

Mom, no one remembers the July ezine!

… the molar on my lower left side had begun to hurt; specifically, touching the top of the tooth was very painful and I had very little hope for holding on to that tooth until Pyrogen performed yet another homeopathic wonder for me! Now, fast-forward to one month ago. I was totally minding my own business when gradually I felt an “incident” brewing in that same tooth! I didn’t worry because I “knew” that all I had to do was repeat the Pyrogen! I did, and it didn’t work!

If there was ever any proof needed that every case is different, this was certainly it! After Pyrogen didn’t work, I became suspicious and checked to see if I had the same tooth sensitivity on the top of the tooth as I did last time, and, in fact, no, the sensation from last time was not there. I looked in the mirror and there it was as big as life — a huge swelling of the gum on the facial side! “Oh my God, an abscess!”


So, here we are again, back to square one!  I, of course, did what? That’s right, repeated Apis 30C!  But nothing happened. So, I went up to Apis 200C, and nothing happened. I said to myself, “Elaine, check to see if that same ‘stinging pain on touch’ is still there from last time.” Well, you guessed it, it wasn’t! “Apis isn’t going to work this time!” I lamented. “Now what?” What was the sensation this time, that was the question! The best I could come up with was a “sore” pain. “Maybe Arnica!” I thought; but, Arnica only worked a little. In the meantime, I tried Silica 30C but after several hours passed, I noticed no difference. In the end, I decided to use the “Abscess, acute” rubric and “sore” pain rubric, plus noted that the bad tooth in question was a lower left molar, and that was it!  With that, believe it or not, I came upon the right remedy; which, by the way, worked in less than an hour despite the abscess having been around for several days while I fooled around with Apis and Arnica!

Now, I know these rubrics don’t seem very informative or very peculiar or characteristic, but, you will be surprised to hear that only two remedies covered the whole case, and since I had already tried one of them, it made my choice easy!

Another homeopathic miracle, and, once again, I get to keep this obnoxious tooth!


Vote Totals:

  • Zinc-2
  • Mercury
  • Bryonia
  • Chamomilla
  • Nat-mur.
  • Rhus tox.
  • Sulphur

You know, I’m beginning to think Shana is right. No one cares about my exciting dental cases! But let it happen just once to you–(and believe me, it will)–and you’ll be calling all over town, frantically, with “What’s the remedy?! I can’t chew, I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, the dentist is all booked up!” Well, I am trying to help you! See, homeopathy DOES work for these problems. You’d think there would be at least one homeopath out there, other than me, with enough nerve to present dental cases; but noooooooooo! Everyone would so much rather hear about lunatics on a shooting spree! Oh sure, it sounds like fun, but how often is this going to be a problem for you compared to the number of times you’re going to get a toothache? I rest my case!

Let’s hear from our winner, Veronique:


I did a quick rep in a rush…and I didn’t keep it.

Mainly, I used Boenninghausen and full Synthesis.

As I remember, I used the following:

1 – Generals – abcesses

2 – teeth – sore pain

3 – Teeth – lower

4 – teeth – pain sore

5 – teeth – pain molars

6 – teeth pain molars lower

7 – teeth pain – molars – left

8 – generals – abcesses – acute

9 – Teeth – bicuspids and molars

10 – Teeth – sore pain – bicuspids and molars

11 – Teeth – gums swelled

1 – 2- 3- 9- 10- 11 are from Boenninghausen

4- 5- 6- 7- 8- are from Syntehsis


Teeth – sore pain (Bg)………. eliminative

teeth – pain – sore (Synthesis)…………………..eliminative

generals abscesses – acute (Synthesis)……..eliminative

the three first rx are Bell, rhus t. and sil

but in my rep don’t know how I did it but I had rhus t. and sil first,

sorry I lost my repertorization.



Yes, I also came up with Silica and Rhus tox as covering the whole case; and since I had already tried Silica, it made the choice of RHUS TOX rather easy. It’s funny, Veronique used a lot more rubrics than I did, and yet we both came up with Rhus tox. Really, all I had to go on was: Acute abscess, Sore sensation, Molars: lower and left. It’s not alot, and you might wonder, “Rhus tox? The itch remedy? The sprain remedy?????” It makes you wonder, doesn’t it? The moral is: some cases have no “essence” and sometimes the “constitutional remedy” is irrelevant; plus, there are uses for our remedies other than the ones we’re all-too-familiar with! Do we need to take a 2 hour case for a toothache? Are you doing “good” homeopathy if you take a two-hour constitutional case for a dental abscess? No!  Ask yourself, “Does this problem eminate from the person’s core personality, or is it the result of a rotten tooth?”  If it’s the result of a rotten tooth, then delving into the person’s core isn’t going to be relevant at all. You need to take the case of the presenting symptoms; the disease, in other words.

By the way, Mercury and Sulphur were also good choices, as they also came up high in my repertorization. You know, if you’re down to four remedies in an acute case, just try the most likely one and get started, don’t fret over not being able to land on one remedy decisively. Notice how many remedies I tried before landing on Rhus tox! But when I did, I knew within an hour that I had found the right remedy.

Dr. B, what has Veronique won?


This month’s winners will get a special 30% discount on one order of books from Hpathy Mall.

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About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at [email protected]
Elaine is a graduate of Robin Murphy's Hahnemann Academy of North America and author of many articles on homeopathy including her monthly feature in the Hpathy ezine, "The Quiz". Visit her website at: and

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