An American Addiction Centers Resource

New to the DrugAbuse.com Forums?Join or

Chewing tongue

Discussion in 'Other Substances' started by racechick79, May 4, 2015.

  1. racechick79

    racechick79 Member

    Has anybody else ever had an addiction to chewing their tongue? I know it doesn't have to do with substance abusing, or even an addiction to a "thing"; but I know someone who does it almost obsessively and I am partially prone to think that maybe it has to do with some of the medication that he has been and is on. I just wondered if anybody else has had experience with this. Thank you in advance!
  2. katherine25

    katherine25 Senior Contributor

    I personally don't do it but I used to have a friend who did it constantly!! she wasn't on any medication but I always thought it was due to nervousness.
    racechick79 likes this.
  3. racechick79

    racechick79 Member

    katherine, thank you for replying! Do you mind my asking how old your friend was and if she ever stopped doing it? I do think that it could have to do with some form of anxiety as well. I just wondered if your friend had triggers or anything?
  4. amethyst

    amethyst Community Champion

    I know that certain drugs cause all kinds of disturbing symptoms, such as chewing your tongue, grinding your teeth, sleep apnea, involuntary nervous twitches and jerks, and so much more. If there is someone in your circle of family or friends who is chewing their tongue excessively, it might be a wise idea to see if they are taking any kind of substances, such as prescribed or recreational drugs. If they are taking a combination of drugs, tongue chewing could also be an effect of polypharmacy.
    At the same time it could also be something a lot more harmless. For example, tongue chewing in kids might indicate that they are allergic to certain foods.
  5. racechick79

    racechick79 Member

    This person is younger and the medications are all prescription for something he is being treated for. So I know it isn't recreational drugs.

    I have never heard that it could be an allergy. Is that true for adults and children? And how do you know if it is an allergy? It is very interesting and I would love to hear more!
  6. kassie1234

    kassie1234 Community Champion

    I don't know anyone who does it either, but it sounds like it's definitely anxiety related...similar to biting your nails, I would assume. I think if that person got to the bottom of what was causing them anxiety or stress, that the behavior of tongue biting would also stop.
    racechick79 likes this.
  7. Miaka_M

    Miaka_M Active Contributor

    I personally don't bite my tongue (unless of course by accident when I eat) but my boyfriend does it all the time. I did ask him about it and he said that it was something that he would do when he was a child and his mother would always nag him to stop. He's not on any medications and he has no intellectual issues, he just does it because he just can't stop. I guess it is out of habit like biting your nails. I used to bite my nails because I enjoyed peeling it (don't ask), maybe its a similar sort of sensation?
    racechick79 likes this.
  8. racechick79

    racechick79 Member

    These are all great responses and I appreciate it! I am going to pass along everything! I know one thing, it is good for him to know that this isn't just him and that others do it, too! @Miaka_M , did your boyfriend say if it made him do it more when people told him to stop? I am just wondering if it is better not to draw attention to it or to try to make them aware of it!
  9. Miaka_M

    Miaka_M Active Contributor

    I actually did have a discussion about this with him and asked him if he rebelled against his mother's wishes on purpose. He said that he would never notice that he was chewing his tongue until he was actually told to stop by her. Maybe its best to not draw attention to this, unless of course the chewing is more like hard biting that can cause the surface of the tongue to rip and cause bleeding, then that would definitely be better to intervene some how.
    racechick79 likes this.
  10. racechick79

    racechick79 Member

    That is what I wondered. Kind of like any kind of OCD behavior, it does seem like those kinds of things are often made worse by drawing attention to it. I told him maybe to try chewing gum more often since it would be a little more socially acceptable and look a little less odd when out in public! I appreciate you asking, that is really helpful!
  11. rightct

    rightct Community Champion

    Whilst reading your thread, I actually bit my tongue 3 times without deliberately doing it, haha!!
    To answer your question, no. I have never deliberately bit my tongue except when I was eating something (boy, the pain it gives you). But I do actually have one person who does this and when asked, he told me that he does this because he wants to restrain himself from smoking. Interesting concept...
  12. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    I sometimes bit my tongue when eating or on some occasion unintentionally.
    It is actually my first time to read something about addiction to chewing tongue and I think it is very uncommon. Maybe it started as mannerism or reaction when feeling stressed or nervous.
  13. oraclemay

    oraclemay Community Champion

    I think people do this when they feel anxious. It is almost like biting their nails. They would be better off doing deep breathing and some relaxation techniques that will be able to help them cope with the anxiety that overwhelms them. Biting your tongue can be really sore and it is not the answer for your issues.
  14. Charli

    Charli Community Champion

    Lots of people have ticks like these so it can be due to a number of possible reasons. I myself have had many different phases where I had similar behavior but fortunately I naturally was able to move on from those ticks each time although I guess I still carry a few that stuck, and thankfully they are not too harsh or noticeable. If you are really worried I recommend having it checked by a professional so you could have an accurate diagnosis of the source.
  15. GenevB

    GenevB Community Champion

    Well, at some point I was addicted to trying to stick my tongue between my teeth, I don't know why, it came up randomly, I was smoking a lot during that period, but I still did this with my tongue, I don't know why. It shortly become just a memory, I think it was for about 6 days or so.
  16. kana_marie

    kana_marie Community Champion

    I think this is another one that you might be able to call a bad habit or a tic. I would suggest gum. As far as it being caused by meds, that is a really big possibility. If you look at the possible side effects of almost any medication you'll notice some really crazy things.
    I've had medicine that made me rock back and forth, and side to side. I've had medicine that made me have very vivid dreams every night, some that would wake me up in the middle of the night and I would be so hungry I'll eat everything I can get my hands on. Licking my lips, scratching,all kinds of really weird things. They'll probably have it listed as "nervous ticks" or "facial ticks".
  17. ZXD22

    ZXD22 Senior Contributor

    Never had one but one of my friends had a bad case of this. It got to the point where he nearly cut his tongue in half after chwwig on it intensly. One good way to prevent this is to obscure the teeth from biting onto the tongue by placing clogs over he tongue. Another way that might work is by wearing mouth guards?
  18. LilAnn

    LilAnn Community Champion

    When my tongue was pierced I couldn't stop playing with it.i never stopped until it became unpeirced
  19. SarahWorksAtHome

    SarahWorksAtHome Community Champion

    No I haven't but similar to @LilAnn when I had my septum (bull ring) piercing I used to make the "duck lips" and play with it. I STILL do it even though I haven't had the piercing for two years now! It became a habit much like tongue chewing I suppose.
  20. Damien Lee

    Damien Lee Community Champion

    I used to chew my tongue a lot when I was young. I think I was in the first or second grade of primary school. One of the teachers noticed this and reprimanded me, told me it was unhealthy and that I should stop doing it. I struggled to stop at first but I eventually kicked this nasty habit. I don't think I was nervous or anything, just a habit I must have picked up without realizing it.