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Toothaches erupt twice as often between 3 and 8 a.m. as they do between 3 and 8 p.m. The culprit is cortisol, a key inflammation-fighting hormone that disappears at night and reappears in a burst when you wake up.

Time to change: If pain is a major factor, make a mid-afternoon dental appointment (local anesthetics last longest in the afternoon). Ibuprofen appears to relieve dental pain better in the early-morning hours and in the afternoon than at night.