Why You're Biting the Inside of Your Mouth

It happens to all of us: at some point or another, we bite the inside of our mouth, sometimes hard enough to bleed! It’s painful and can interfere with our eating for a few days.

But, for some people, biting the inside of their mouth is a common and oft-repeated occurrence. Today, we’re going to talk about the causes and solutions for those who bite the inside of their mouths.

During sleep

Anxiety or stress can cause biting; when a patient is going through a rough patch emotionally, this can cause night grinding, which in turn puts the inside of the cheeks at risk for biting. By wearing a mouthguard at night, not only will the patient protect their teeth from the ill-effects of grinding, but it will also protect the lining of their mouth.

Misaligned teeth or jaw

When the teeth or jaw is misaligned, it becomes much easier to bite the inside of one’s mouth inadvertently. For some, this biting can occur during sleep, especially for side sleepers, as sleeping on one’s side can put pressure on the face. The sleeper awakes with bites to the inside of their cheek. By correcting the alignment problem, the chance of mouth biting is reduced dramatically.

Wisdom teeth

In some cases, the wisdom teeth can be the cause of mouth biting because the mouth and jaw genuinely do not have adequate space for more teeth. Wisdom teeth in these circumstances tend to grow in crookedly. Once the wisdom teeth are removed, the patient becomes free of the cause and no longer has a biting problem.

Emotional considerations


While many causes of cheek biting are teeth- and jaw-related, we would be remiss if we didn’t mention that biting the inside of the mouth can be a habit brought on by emotional struggles. Similar to night grinding, some patients bite the inside of their mouths because they have a nervous habit, not unlike night grinders, except for the fact that they do it during the day.

It can be an unconscious habit or very deliberate and obsessive. This is the kind of situation which is better resolved by a psychiatrist than a dentist.

Bites to the lining of the mouth are very painful. They can interfere with eating, talking, and the choice of food. By resolving these issues, a patient can significantly enhance their quality of life.

If you need a gentle, caring dental team, please call our office at (623) 362-2550. We’ll give you the very best dental care we can!