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No Face Touching
One of the crucial habits to break is your hands constantly leaning on or touching your face. This posture is the easiest way to push your cheek skin over and start nibbling.
So the focus here is to catch yourself touching your face and stop immediately. The simple act of removing hands from your face will make it difficult for you to bite hard inside your mouth.
Salt / Saline Rinse
Rinse or gargle with lightly salted water (saline) 2-3 times per day until any mouth discomfort and swelling subsides.
To prepare Saline; dissolve a half teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and swill in your mouth for up to 2 minutes before spitting out.
No Chewing gum
Our research has shown that chewing gum is NOT helpful for quitting. There’s more opportunity for teeth to accidentally bite your cheek skin.
In addition, chewing gum dries out your mouth, further hindering the healing process. For these reasons we advise to avoid chewing gum whilst quitting.
Cheek Puff – create your air gap
In the first few days of the course pay close attention to your inner cheeks (the oral mucous membrane). After long-term biting and nibbling the skin is raw and needs time to heal. It’s likely to be swollen in places and have plenty of blood flow around the chewed areas.
There maybe hard lumps or scar tissue, breaks in the skin lining or erosions caused by biting. These are difficult to soothe with topical creams, however there are other techniques that will advance the healing.
The P2 Cheek Puff is simple and you can refine it as needed.
Start by closing your mouth and creating a small air gap between your inner cheeks and teeth. This gap stops any unnecessary rubbing or abrasion and gives your cheeks the space to heal.
Continue to breathe normally through your nose, but with slightly inflated cheeks. Experiment in the mirror to see what it looks like. Then determine the minimum amount of air gap you need to look normal and natural (without looking like you’re going to explode).
The objective is to allow your mouth skin to heal as fast as possible, with no irritations or unwanted rubbing from your teeth.
So when can I use the Cheek Puff?
The Cheek Puff can be used anytime and particularly when it’s not convenient to use the QuitGuard. By practicing in the mirror, you’ll be able to refine your Cheek Puff so that no one will notice you’re doing it.
Liken it to blowing a raspberry; although you do not exhale the air, you merely keep your cheeks inflated. This creates a small pocket of air between your inner cheek skin and teeth.
Appropriate times may include:
- In a meeting; where you need to talk freely without a mouth protector, you merely utilise the Cheek Puff technique in those moments when you’re not speaking.
- On a bus; a crowded public place can trigger nervous biting, the ideal place to Cheek Puff
- At a café or lunch; in between eating
- At your work station; can be a semi-private place to relax into your Cheek Puff
Use this powerful, healing technique whenever you can. Your inner cheek skin will repair quicker than you think and you’ll soon be enjoying a healthy, smooth mouth. Once the mouth skin is healed, there’ll be less temptation for your tongue to search for loose skin to nibble and trim.
The ongoing temptation to bite is a topic we look further into throughout the course. We help you break free from your ‘searching’ tongue habits and the ‘finger pushing’ against your cheek.
Stay with us and enjoy first techniques – things are only going to get better.
Inner Cheek Healing Process
Your mouth skin begins to transform when you quit nibbling and biting.
Compared to external skin, the internal skin of your cheek will heal a lot faster. This is due to the constantly moist environment. Once you stop biting, the skin will return to normal in a short period of time with minimal scarring.
The following shows the natural skin healing process in its overlapping stages:
- Hemostasis – The body activates its emergency repair system and starts to clot blood
- Inflammatory – Destroys bacteria and starts to remove debris, preparing the wound for growth of new tissue
- Proliferative – The focus is to fill and cover the wound
- Maturation – The new tissue slowly gains strength and flexibility
One of the factors speeding up the healing process is the presence of saliva, which promotes the healing of oral wounds in several ways. Saliva creates a humid environment, which improves the survival and functioning of inflammatory cells that are crucial for wound healing. Furthermore, saliva contains a variety of proteins that play a role in the various stages of oral wound healing.
Let’s learn what your mouth is doing when you stop biting:
Your mouth starts to clot blood (if necessary) from your last bite. Hemostasis phase.
Your mouth starts to repair from your last nibble and works hard to fight off bacteria that may be harmful to the wound. The bite is sore to touch and will be affected by spicy/salty foods. This is the early beginning of the Inflammatory phase.
Your body is clearing away the unnecessary dead skin tags. These become loose and flaky due to less blood supply and are merely hanging there. You can feel the bite crater, which is swollen and inflamed to the touch.
This is a continuation of the Inflammatory phase. Your mouth is working to keep that bite, clean and bacteria free and give it the best possible chance to heal quickly.
Here the body is just starting to rebuild the crater you have made by biting.
The wound is starting to contract and is reducing in size. If you feel the bite, it now has rounded edges, rather than the sharp edges from 2 days ago. Most of the dead skin tags are gone. This is the very early onset of the Proliferative phase.
Collagen accumulation begins; this provides the “glue” from which new blood vessels will develop.
The wound continues to contract; you may notice it becoming smaller and much less obvious in your mouth. There will still be bumps, but no real craters. We are moving to the end of the Proliferative and into the early stages of Maturation.
1 – 3 weeks
The final Maturation phase occurs once the wound is fully closed. Collagen production slows down and the number of blood vessels in the area decrease. The mouth skin has healed, however care must be taken to nurture this brand new skin and give it time to re-establish.
4 – 9 months
This is the time where your skin becomes more resilient to scratches and minor tears. Your skin’s elasticity continues to improve and only gets stronger from this point.
As you can see your skin goes on quite a journey of renewal. Your body can heal itself naturally and will do so once you allow this to happen.
Give your mouth the break it deserves and you’ll also experience the following physical effects when you quit biting:
- Better family life
- Improved lifestyle
- Look and feel better
- Healthier looking skin
- Fresher breath
- Improved eating experiences
- Plus many more
It’s important for you to celebrate these other benefits when you break free from cheek biting for good:
- Better body posture
- Improved career opportunities
- Save money on dental healthcare
- Save money on healthcare