Cheek bite according to medical terminology is “Morsicatio buccarum”. The condition is characterized by an injury to the soft tissues especially cheeks as a result of repetitive biting on the buccal mucosa.
Owing to high anxiety levels, improper dentition and odd chewing habits cheek biting has become a common problem, not only in children but also in adults.
Adults of age group 20 to 30 years are most commonly afflicted by this problem. The most common reason of cheek bite is when a fold of a cheek comes between the upper and lower dentition. This makes the soft tissues of cheek prone to continuous laceration. The recommended treatment for cheek biting is anti-ulcer ointment (to heal the ulcer formation due to cheek biting) and placing braces for at least 18 months to correct the cheek biting due to malaligned teeth. Keep a note of the following thing:
Cheek biting has become a common condition in metros, stress being the major causative factor. It starts with a subconscious activity but after an initial bite the area becomes prone to repeated bites.
Increased Stress/Anxiety: People having disorder of nervous system or having high levels of anxiety are prone to bruxism i.e. teeth grinding during night. Due to this habit of bruxism, the soft areas especially cheek becomes more prone to cheek biting.
Increased Stress/Anxiety Wisdom Tooth Eruption
Wisdom Tooth Eruption: Many a times, due to the outward erupting direction of wisdom tooth people develops the habit of cheek biting. The only treatment is extraction of wisdom teeth.
Misaligned Dentition: Having irregular teeth in the oral cavity can also lead to cheek biting. When the teeth have excess gaps or are overcrowded then it leads to the flap of cheek to come in between the teeth while masticating. This act causes cheek biting. The treatment recommended is visiting a dentist and getting the sharp cusps blunt and after that starting off with dental treatment.
Wisdom Tooth Eruption Misaligned Dentition
Treatment of cheek bite depends upon the factors causing cheek biting. So, depending upon the cause here are the best treatment available:
Wearing Night Guards: They are the choice of treatment when cheek biting is due to bruxism or night grinding. Night guards are silicon guards that come separately for upper and lower dentition and are to be worn by the patient during night.
Enameloplasty: It is defined as the reshaping of outer surface of tooth, enamel. Enameloplasty is done if the tooth is sharp and is continuously biting upon the cheeks. The procedure involves making the cusps blunt using an air rotor.
Orthodontic Treatment: If malaligned teeth or spacing are the cause, then getting braces is the treatment of choice.
Tooth Extraction: Tooth Extraction is advised if cheek biting is due to the out of arch erupting wisdom tooth.
Chewing Sugar Free Gums: This is quite a useful remedy in case of a habit of compulsive cheek biting. Under this disorder, regardless of the pain, patient continues to bite his/her cheeks owing to the stress and anxiety. So, chewing upon a sugar free chewing gum is a good option to cope up with this habit.
Meditation: If stress and anxiety are an etiological factor behind cheek biting then you should start with meditation and yoga every morning. Also try to understand the factors that are causing stress and when found try to eradicate them. Every day fix a specific time to meditate. During that time, close your eyes and focus on all the things that make you positive. This will help in killing the negative energy within you.
Chewing Sugar Free Meditation
I had this dreadful habit of cheek biting for a long 25 years. I bit upon my cheeks, lips and tongue continuously and it became an unconditioned reflex for me. I did it while in public, while studying or while thinking anything. I wanted to get rid of this habit but getting away after such a long time was near to impossible. Also the danger of getting oral cancer was freaking me out. So, I tried hard and eventually came out of it. Here is my story how I did it.
The first thing I tried is to keep my mouth busy. I shifted to chewing gums for maximum hours of the day and when alone, I smiled. I didn’t care what others thought. I wanted to leave this habit. Gradually, my habit was declining and it boosted my moral. Now, I have completely left this habit but today also I feel like chewing my lips, tongue, cheeks but thanks to the chewing gums (only sugar free else you will end up with caries) that I carry. I put them instantly and chew them like insane.
"Let me tell you that the habit of cheek biting is as awful as smoking. Earlier you leave, better it is."
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