Benzocaine (By mouth)


Benzocaine (BEN-zoe-kane)

Temporarily relieves pain caused by braces and dentures, canker sores, cold sores, fever blisters, minor irritation or injury to the mouth, sore gums due to teething (infants and children), or toothaches. The spray is used to numb the mouth and throat and to prevent gagging during a medical or dental procedure. This medicine is an oral anesthetic.

Brand Name(s)

Anbesol, Anbesol Maximum Strength, Benz-O-Sthetic, Benzodent, Bizets, Cankaid, Dent-O-Kain/20, HDA Toothache, HurriCaine, Hurricaine, Hurricaine One, Hurricaine Spray Kit, Leader Oral Pain Relief, Mycinette, Ora Film

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine

Cream, Powder for Suspension, Thin Sheet, Gel/Jelly, Liquid, Lozenge, Tablet, Ointment, Paste, Spray, Swab

  • Follow the instructions on the medicine label if you are using this medicine without a prescription.
  • If you are using this medicine for teething in your infant or child, ask your doctor how much to use and how often.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water before and after you use this medicine.
  • Apply a small amount of this medicine to the affected area in the mouth. Put the medicine on the gum area that is next to the painful tooth. For infants and children who are teething, put the medicine on the gum area that is sore or swollen with your fingertip or with a cotton applicator. The liquid and gel forms are the easiest to use for teething.
  • Hold the swab form of this medicine with the white tip down. Bend and snap open the swab tip with the colored rings. Use each swab only one time and then throw it away.
  • Make sure your fingers are dry before touching the film form of this medicine. Use only one film each time. The film can be folded in half or left unfolded, and should be placed in the mouth on the gum area that is sore. Allow the film to dissolve completely.
  • The spray form of this medicine will be sprayed into your mouth before a procedure. A dentist, nurse, or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
  • This medicine is not for long-term use. Do not use this medicine for more than 7 days unless you are told to do so by your dentist or doctor.

If a dose is missed:

  • Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • The liquid form of this medicine is flammable. You must keep it away from heat, fire, or an open flame. Do not smoke while using this medicine.
  • You should not give this medicine to a child under 2 years of age without asking your dentist or doctor. If your doctor tells you to, only use this medicine for teething in infants and children who are 4 months of age or older.
  • This medicine should not be used in the eyes or in the area near the eyes.
  • Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Fever, swelling, or rash.
  • Increased pain, irritation, or redness.
  • Nasal congestion (in infant).

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 8/4/2014

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