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Can chewing tobacco reduce mouth opening?

The following is an actual conversation between an iCliniq user and a doctor that has been reviewed and published as a Premium Q&A.

Medically reviewed by

iCliniq medical review team

Published At June 29, 2017
Reviewed AtJanuary 24, 2024

Patient's Query

Hi doctor,

I can barely open my mouth up to three fingers space. Is it bad or normal? I have never noticed this before, only recently I happen to see this. I chew tobacco. Is that causing it? Is it serious?

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

Your problem is very common amongst regular tobacco chewers.

  • Tobacco, beetle nuts, etc., especially when mixed with limestone, damages the mouth walls on the sides if it is frequently placed. This frequent injury and healing process forms scar tissue of fibroblasts origin. This contracts the site, making the stretchability of that region less, which is called oral submucous fibrosis.
  • In the long run, the mouth opening gets so narrow that only a single finger can pass through hardly.
  • Continuing to chew tobacco after this may cause oral cancer. So, tobacco is the real culprit to blame for your condition. I recommend you quit the habit of chewing tobacco. Decrease the frequency gradually until you stop it.
  • You can consult your local physician for an oral examination for any lesions in the mouth and get help to quit the habit of tobacco.

I appreciate you got aware, and it is never too late for a new start. So, live an addiction-free life. Take care. Do not worry. You will be fine.

For more information consult an internal medicine physician online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/internal-medicine-physician

Same symptoms don't mean you have the same problem. Consult a doctor now!

Dr. Chandwadkar Ashish
Dr. Chandwadkar Ashish

Internal Medicine

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