4. Cheek biting
Accidental cheek or lip biting is a common and, although painful, mostly harmless. Cheek biting becomes problematic when misaligned teeth, ill-fitting false teeth or a nervous cheek chewing habit (not unlike nail biting) cause constant biting and chronic cheek irritation. “The chronic presence of [mouth] sores can lead to serious infection,” says Dr. MacDonald. Beyond uncomfortable sores and an increased potential for infection, there is also some concern that cheek chewing could be a cause of oral cancer. “There is speculation that cheek biters are more susceptible to developing oral cancer. I wouldn’t be too quick to make that correlation, but mouth sores are certainly something that one would want to eliminate,” says Dr. MacDonald.